Reduction: Reduce the impacts of volcanic activity

This page provides volcanic activity reduction messages.

Find out from your local Civil Defence Emergency Management Group what the volcanic risk is in your area. Auckland, Bay of Plenty, Gisborne, Hawkes Bay, northern Manawatū, Northland, Taranaki and Waikato are especially at risk from volcanic ash falls.

For areas that are at risk from near-volcano hazards, consider mitigation through education to increase awareness of areas to avoid during volcanic activity. These may include hazard zones (some regions, such as Taranaki, have these) and all areas within at least 20 kilometres of a volcano, particularly valleys and other low-lying areas.

If you live in an area at risk from volcanic ash falls, take the following steps to reduce volcanic impacts:

  • Make buildings as airtight as possible, to exclude ash.
  • Ensure rain gutters are well-maintained, kept clear of debris, and securely attached. Gutters are prone to collapse from ash loading.
  • If your household uses roof-collected rainwater tanks, consider installing first-flush diverters to reduce ash entering water tanks.
  • Ensure galvanised steel roof cladding is well-maintained and painted/coated to be more resistant to corrosion from volcanic ash, gases and aerosols.
  • Design buildings with steeply pitched roofs to help shed ash to reduce risk of roof collapse. This is primarily an issue for buildings in Tongariro and Taranaki National Parks.
  • Seal any openings in water tanks (e.g. poorly-fitted covers) to prevent the entry of ash.

Specialist advice to reduce the impacts of volcanic activity is also available for: