Auckland Civil Defence Initiatives

( Mayor Len Brown has announced three new initiatives to better prepare Auckland for civil emergencies.

The initiatives include the development of neighbourhood and community emergency preparedness plans, a plan to give social media a key role in emergency preparedness and the announcement of a major regional civil defence exercise early next year.

Auckland currently does not have neighbourhood or community civil defence plans. Mayor Brown sees this as a serious weakness in our emergency preparedness and wants all communities to have their own plans. “It will obviously take some time to implement this across Auckland, but to begin with, eight communities will have their own plans progressed within 100 days of the birth of the Auckland Council,” he says.

Mayor Brown has also decided to give social media a key role in emergency preparedness. “Social media channels such as facebook and twitter and e-learning are a great way to raise awareness and preparedness for emergencies,” he says. “Hundreds or thousands of Aucklanders use these tools every day and we cannot ignore social media as we reach out to our people to better prepare them for emergencies.”

The Mayor has also announced a major Auckland-wide civil defence exercise. The exercise will occur early next year and the council will announce details shortly.

“While the memory of what the people of Christchurch have had to endure is still fresh in people’s minds, we need to take the opportunity to ensure Auckland is ready for emergency situations. Auckland may not be as prone to earthquakes as other parts of the country, but there are many other kinds of emergency – tsunami, volcanic eruption or whatever – that we need to be ready for,” he says.

Media Release 10 November 2010 from Auckland City Council.