Natural hazard risks

Orange road cones are placed around a section of hillside that has collapsed.

Find out how we're designing a city that will cope with rising sea levels, extreme weather events and earthquakes.

How we manage natural hazards

The district plan’s rules and policies are an important way of managing the impacts of natural hazards on life, property and roads and other infrastructure.

As part of our district plan review, we’re taking a fresh look at its natural hazards provisions.

We work with other organisations to identify areas at risk of hazards and look at managing the impacts of natural hazards which may include some restrictions on uses and activities.

While managing natural hazard risk is a moral responsibility, Hutt City Council is required to manage natural hazard risk under the Resource Management Act and the Greater Wellington Regional Policy Statement.


The district has a number of faults and the Wellington Fault runs along the northwest side of the Hutt Valley. Earthquakes may include ground shaking, liquefaction, ground subsidence or sinking, fault rupture, landslides and tsunamis. All of these can cause major damage to buildings and infrastructure, and pose a significant threat to life.


Extreme weather and flooding have been the key causes of property damage and disruption in Lower Hutt. Flooding can be caused by rivers and streams, storm water runoff, storm surge causing large waves and tides, and sea-level rise.

The Hutt River Te Awa Kairangi valley is the most densely populated floodplain in New Zealand. Many of our settlements are also low lying and located along the coast such as Eastbourne and Petone.

This makes much of Lower Hutt  vulnerable to damage from flooding. Other streams flowing into the Hutt River Te Awa Kairangi also pose flooding risks, such as the Waiwhetū and Korokoro streams.

Areas such as Stokes Valley and Wainuiomata are also built on floodplains. Flooding and storms can also cause slips and erosion.

Flood water can pose serious threats to human life as well as damage to property and interruption of commerce and essential services such as drinking water and power.

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