If you are in a tsunami evacuation zone when there is an earthquake that is long or strong - get gone. Don't wait for an official warning. Look at our tsunami evacuation maps to find out where to get to safely during a tsunami.
Tsunamis are rare events but can be extremely deadly.
A tsunami is a series of sea waves or surges caused by a sudden event (such as earthquakes) beneath, or near the ocean causing the water column to move and a tsunami ‘wave’ to form. Tsunami waves travel rapidly through oceans, but as they reach shallower coastal waters the waves slow and grow in height. Onshore they may break, but more commonly cause a rapid rise in fast flowing water that can cause widespread damage, injuries and loss of life.
Tsunami form a series of waves that can be spread over a 12 hour time period, with waves arriving up to an hour apart. Tsunami travel much further inland than ordinary coastal waves and may also cause strong currents and fast rising tides.
The only warning you will get for a tsunami caused by a local earthquake is the earthquake itself. For distance-source tsunami there may be time for official warnings and evacuations.
Check if the places you live, work, go to school or play are in an tsunami evacuation zone.
- Interactive tsunami evacuation map
- Petone to Hutt Central (PDF 933 kb)
- Eastbourne- The Bays (PDF 600 kb)
- Pencarrow - Wainuiomata Coast (PDF 855 kb)
- Seaview - Gracefield (PDF 716 kb)
- WREMO Tsunami zones
The danger may take several hours to pass. Only return to your home if it is safe to do so. Remember your home or neighbourhood may have been damaged.
- Know where to go to get out of the tsunami evacuation zones.
- Plan the route now with your household and work colleagues.
- Check to see what your children's school or early learning centre evacuation plan is, if they are inside a tsunami evacuation zone.