Tsunami sirens not recognised
Aucklanders don’t recognise tsunami warning sirens and Auckland Council wants to spend $2.7 million to change that.
Craig Glover, from Auckland Civil Defence, said voice alerts and an education campaign were needed as many people did not understand sirens.
‘‘The tone only sounds are not recommended by the Ministry of Civil Defence for that reason, they do cause confusion.’’
As part of a wide-ranging education system, council wants to upgrade the sirens to carry prerecorded voice alerts.
Presently, tsunami warning methods include text, email, social media, radio and television messages - loudspeaker equipped helicopters can even be deployed.
Council wants to ensure each method is effective, taking a ‘‘big picture view of public alerting’’, Glover said.
On Wednesday, the council’s Civil Defence and Emergency Management Committee endorsed a draft framework to update the Auckland’s emergency alerting systems.
The framework defines what public alerting can and cannot do and looks at each of Auckland’s alerting channels.
After local board consultation, a report will go back to the civil defence committee in May before a roll out of the new initiatives.
Glover expects the project will take up to two years.