A number of people were surprised that they did not receive an alert from the Red Cross Hazard App this morning, particularly given the large volume of messaging on social media.

So that our alerts do not become yet another frequent and mundane message, it is our intention to only use the alerting tool when we want you to stop, take note, and carry out some immediate action. There is little point in getting people out of bed to tell them “not to worry, and go back to sleep!"

While there was a potential threat to our region, it was assessed early on by our local hazard analysts as being unlikely to have a significant impact, with no evacuations required, and this turned out to be the case.

Even so, it is important to keep people informed, particularly where they are likely to receive messaging from other sources, therefore we tried to reflect the official messaging coming from the Ministry of Civil Defence on our social media channels.

Please note, MetService & Geonet send out quite a few alerts.   If you find you are getting too many, go in to the locations you are monitoring in the app and pick which ones you want to receive. For example you may not want to receive severe weather statements for your locations, but still want to get weather warnings. You can also set the magnitude of earthquakes to a higher value, so you only get notifications only for significant earthquakes near your chosen location. Always leave the General Notifications active – that is the feed you will get alerts from WREMO on.

If you find you are getting multiple alerts for the same location (particularly weather watches and warnings) it may be because the area you are monitoring crosses multiple MetService warning areas (like Wellington and the Wairarapa and the Kapiti Coast and even Marlborough). If you reduce the alert radius for that location then you should see less warnings.

Bruce Pepperell
Regional Controller

7 September 2016