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Bay of Plenty tsunami warning cancelled

Friday, 18 September 2015 4:00 p.m.

The tsunami warning for Bay of Plenty was lifted at 2.00pm today by Ministry of Civil Defence & Emergency Management (MCDEM).

The Tsunami Warning (Marine and Beach Threat) was issued at midday on Thursday 17 September, with the first waves arriving at the Chatham Islands from 11.50pm on Thursday. Wave heights were up to 50 cm, which were recorded in parts of the Chatham Islands.

Bay of Plenty Civil Defence Group Controller Clinton Naude said that no reports of damage or other problems related to tsunami swells and currents have been reported in Bay of Plenty.

“We’ve been fortunate that this event has remained small scale for the Bay of Plenty, our hearts go out to those in Chile that have been less fortunate. We may not be so lucky next time so it’s important to take every warning seriously. A big thank you to the public, our civil defence partners and civil defence staff for their vigilance and support over the past 24 hours,” Mr Naude said.

The GeoNet Tsunami Expert Panel has advised that there will be some unusual water conditions such as local tidal surges and strong currents for the next 24-36 hours. This unusual activity will gradually return to normal conditions during this time. People should exercise caution and discretion before entering the water or going out in small boats.

“Hopefully the warning has prompted everyone to make sure that their household emergency plans are in place and get away kits stocked up. It’s not always possible to give advance warning of a tsunami, so it’s important that people already know where their nearest high point is and the quickest walking route to get there, “ Mr Naude said.

To sign up for emergency text and email alerts, and for further advice on planning for an emergency, visit www.bopcivildefence.govt.nz.

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