Tsunami siren testing at Ōrewa on Sunday 7 April

Publish Date : 28 Mar 2024
Orewa Auckland Council
Ōrewa beach. File picture, not taken during a tsunami.

The bi-annual test of the two tsunami sirens at Ōrewa will take place on the last day of daylight saving on Sunday 7 April 2024, at midday.

“We need to ensure the sirens are working properly. No action is required by the public and there’s no cause for alarm during the testing,” Auckland Emergency Management Acting General Manager Adam Maggs says.

Located at Ōrewa beach, the sirens give a combination of alert sounds and voice instructions advising what actions residents should take in a real emergency. You can check and listen to the siren sound sample on the Auckland Emergency Management website.

Ōrewa is the only location in the Auckland region which has tsunami sirens following the deactivation of sirens at other sites in December 2023 due to vandalism, theft and outdated technology, making them unreliable as part of our tsunami alerting system. The two sirens at Ōrewa (installed in 2020) are newer than the decommissioned sirens and haven’t suffered vandalism or thefts.

A new project is underway to consider the best way to warn residents and visitors to the region’s coastal areas of their tsunami risk.

Councillor Sharon Stewart, Auckland Council’s Civil Defence and Emergency Management Committee chairperson says the siren testing at Ōrewa is a good prompt to remind all Aucklanders that there will be timely communication in the event of a potential tsunami no matter what part of the Auckland region.

“An Emergency Mobile Alert will be broadcast to all capable mobile phones in the event of a tsunami threat. News media and social media channels will be used to alert Aucklanders as well.”

Councillor Stewart also encourages Aucklanders to check out the region’s updated and simplified tsunami evacuation maps through Auckland’s Hazard Viewer.

“The Hazard Viewer is an extremely useful tool which shows areas of Auckland predicted to be flooded during a tsunami.
“Our new modelling is more accurate and indicates the tsunami risk for much of the Auckland coastline to be lower than previously expected.”
What are the natural warning signs for tsunami? 

If you are near the shore and experience any of the following, take action. Do not wait for official warnings. 

  • Feel a strong earthquake that makes it hard to stand or a long earthquake that lasts more than a minute
  • See a sudden rise or fall in sea level
  • Hear loud or unusual noises from the sea

Remember! If an earthquake is LONG or STRONG, GET GONE and move to higher ground. 

Be prepared 

Prepare your household emergency plan and practice it so everyone knows what to do in an emergency and what you need to take if you are evacuating.  

Check out Auckland’s Hazard Viewer for updated tsunami evacuation maps.

Check the tsunami preparedness tips and what to do before, during and after a tsunami.  


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