The release of a video warning of an anticipated "megathrust" earthquake has prompted local Civil Defence managers to urge people to be prepared for any type of emergency.

The Manawatū-Whanganui Civil Defence and Emergency Management (MWCDEM) Group is part of a group planning for the anticipated "megathrust" earthquake which may strike near the eastern coast of the North Island.

The first Hikurangi Response Plan educational video features practical tips on how to better prepare for a large earthquake and tsunami.

"The development of the Hikurangi Response Plan is a great example of the collaboration being undertaken between scientists, emergency managers, experts and stakeholders to understand the potential risks associated with the Hikurangi Subduction Zone," Ian Lowe, Horizons Regional Council's emergency manager and manager of the MWCDEM Group, said.


"Better understanding of the risks will enable emergency management practitioners to work together to develop a response plan and to build resilience in the most effective way."

The four-minute video clip has been prepared by East Coast LAB (Life at the Boundary), a programme trying to educate the public, especially those living on the coast near the Hikurangi plate boundary.

It warns New Zealand sits on a subduction zone similar to Japan, and people should be prepared for the next large earthquake and tsunami.

Five Civil Defence Emergency Management groups – Bay of Plenty, Tairāwhiti (Gisborne), Hawke's Bay, Manawatū-Whanganui and Wellington – are working with East Coast LAB to develop the Hikurangi Response Plan.

The emergency plan will set out how Civil Defence, in the areas most likely to be affected, will respond to a future Hikurangi subduction zone earthquake and tsunami.

Scientists have developed a credible magnitude 8.9 earthquake and tsunami scenario, which will be used to determine potential impacts, response priorities and resource requirements.

Lowe said people should also be prepared for other emergencies.

"In addition to earthquakes and tsunamis, the Manawatū-Whanganui region is also susceptible to a range of other natural hazards such as active volcanoes and river flooding so it is important that the community is prepared and knows what to do in an emergency," Lowe said.


"If you need advice regarding preparing for an emergency, your local council civil defence team can assist."

The video is available on YouTube at