Hon John Carter
Minister of Civil Defence
30 October 2009
Reviews of Civil Defence tsunami response released
Civil Defence Minister John Carter has released the reports of the internal and external reviews into the Ministry of
Civil Defence’s response to the 30 September 2009 tsunami alert.
“Overall, the reviews show the response to the tsunami threat was good, but make a number of recommendations to improve
future responses. That includes timely and co-ordinated communication with the media, which are important public
conduits in the event of a civil defence operation,” says Mr Carter
The internal report is a comprehensive review conducted by the Ministry into its operational response to the alert. The
external review primarily focused on the management of public information during the alert, and was conducted by Simon
Murdoch, former Secretary of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
“The internal review makes 20 recommendations and the Ministry has undertaken to adopt all of these. It had already
addressed a number of the issues by the time of the 8 October tsunami alert, and is making good progress on implementing
the other recommendations. The external review supports the Ministry’s recommendations, and makes a number of findings
which will also be adopted.
“It is important we have the best possible civil defence and emergency management systems and support in place. I will
work with the Ministry to ensure the necessary improvements are made so New Zealanders can continue to have confidence
in the systems they will rely on for support in the event of a disaster or serious emergency.
“Given their importance in such situations, maintaining an ongoing and robust relationship between the Ministry and
media organisations will be a crucial part of this process,” says Mr Carter.
The Ministry of Civil Defence’s review is available at
The independent review is available at www.beehive.govt.nz/webfm_send/3