The Government must listen to New Zealanders and provide the funding necessary to staff Geonet 24 hours a day, says Labour’s Civil Defence and Emergency Management spokesperson Clare Curran.
“Today I have presented a petition to Parliament signed by 11,551 New Zealanders calling for Geonet to be staffed around the clock,” she says.
“As recent experience proves, New Zealand is rightfully known as the ‘Shaky Isles’, so it’s absolutely essential we have an earthquake and tsunami monitoring service that is staffed 24/7.
“Right now, we don’t have around the clock staffing, which could cause significant delays in getting information out to everyone who needs it.
“When the 7.8 earthquake hit Kaikoura, GeoNet staff had to wake up and get out of bed before they could begin analysing complex data and making critical decisions about the action New Zealanders should take.
“Along with the thousands of New Zealanders who signed the petition, and the many more thousands who agree with it, I urge the Government to give Geonet the support it needs – our immediate response to natural disasters depends on this,” says Clare Curran.