Get prepared

From storing up on essential supplies of food and water to making sure you have enough warm clothes, there are a host of simple things you can do to prepare for an emergency.

How to get ready for a major emergency

From storing up on essential supplies of food and water to making sure you have enough warm clothes, there are a host of simple things you can do to prepare for an emergency.

A good starting point is having enough supplies to look after yourself and your family for up to least seven days. 

The most immediate source of help after a disaster will be the steps you took to prepare before an emergency event.

Here are some things you can do:

Where to go in an emergency

The best place you can be during an emergency is in your own home:

  • If you don’t feel safe at home, see if there is a neighbour, friend, or family member you can stay with. 
  • If you need to evacuate because of flooding or a tsunami, you’ll be more comfortable if you can shelter at the home of friends or family. 
  • If there’s a large-scale emergency, we may need to help each other out for a while. We’ll let you know where you can go for extra help if you need it.
  • In an earthquake, drop, cover and hold until the shaking has stopped
  • If you are near the coastline, move to higher ground immediately after the earthquake in case a tsunami follows. Read more about tsunamis and tsunami zones.

Drop Cover Hold

What you need to know

Get Ready week is held every year to mark the International Day for Natural Disaster Reduction (13 October).  There is a different theme each year.

You'll see lots of great information about Get Ready week on the Get Prepared website, the Civil Defence website, and on WREMO's Facebook site.

The Government also launched a new emergency mobile alerting service on 26 November 2017 to keep you informed in an emergency.  This system will use cell broadcast technology to send messages to enabled phones, so alerts can be targeted to specific locations.  Check to see if your phone can receive Emergency Mobile Alerts.

The alert messages can only be sent by the Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management, Civil Defence Emergency Management Groups, NZ Police, Fire and Emergency New Zealand, the Ministry of Health and the Ministry for Primary Industries. 

Find out what’s going on

  • Get the latest information about a national civil defence emergency:
  • Find details of the latest earthquakes in New Zealand:
  • Get updates about what the weather's doing:
  • Download to your smartphone the Red Cross app for weather alerts: Red Cross Hazards App
  • For the latest on any emergency in the Wellington Region, go to the Wellington Regional Emergency Management (WREMO) website:
  • Update your smartphone to the latest operating system to receive national emergency alerts.  Check the Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management website to see if your phone is able to receive Emergency Mobile Alerts.

The radio station frequencies for Wellington, Hutt Valley and Porirua are:

  • National Radio (Radio NZ) 567 AM, 101.3 FM, 101.7FM, 104.5 FM
  • Newstalk ZB 1035 AM
  • Classic Hits 90 FM
  • More FM 94.7 FM, 100 FM
  • The Breeze 94 FM, 98 FM
  • Radio Live 98.7 FM, 1233 AM

Keep out of flood water – don’t attempt to walk or drive through a flooded area. Phone us to report any flooding problems: (04) 237 5089.


  • If there’s anything life threatening, phone 111.
  • If the landslide is on private property, call your insurance company, and EQC on 0800 DAMAGE (0800 326 243).
  • If the landslide is on Porirua City property or a road, phone us on (04) 237 5089.

Rural or urban fire: Phone 111 and ask for Fire.

Hazardous substance: Phone 111 and ask for Fire.

Disrupted services:

  • Power – to report an outage, or check your area, phone your electricity provider or go to Wellington Electricity.
  • Gas – phone your gas provider. If you suspect a gas leak, phone 111 and ask for Fire.
  • Water – phone us: (04) 237 5089.
  • Phone or internet – call your provider.

Transport accident: Phone 111.

Public health hazard: Phone us: (04) 237 5089.

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