Landslides

Landslides are a serious hazard throughout much of New Zealand. Learn what to do before, during and after a landslide to minimise risk to you and your family.

For general preparedness, every household should create and practice a Household Emergency Plan and assemble and maintain Emergency Survival Items and a Getaway Kit. In addition, every household at risk from landslides should take specific precautions and plan for and practice what to do if a landslide occurs.

Action messages

  1. Determine your risk.
  2. Prepare members of your household.
  3. Consult an expert and mitigate and/or reduce potential problems.
  4. Be alert to changes and patterns in the land.
  5. Monitor local news.
  6. Consider evacuating.
  7. Look and listen for signs of landslides.
  8. Get out.
  9. Inform your neighbours.
  10. Contact local officials.
  11. Get out of the landslide’s path.
  12. Stay away from the slide area.
  13. Help others.
  14. Report hazards.

Download our hazard app to help you make it safely through a disaster.

More information on how to prepare for and what to do following a landslide:

Landslides - Civil Defence Guide (PDF)

More about landslides

Few areas are immune to landslide hazards. Landslides are a normal and natural erosion process, but they can be dangerous. Although most landslides are associated with heavy rain, earthquakes, or excavations, some can be delayed from their triggering event, falling minutes, hours, days, or weeks after the initial trigger. This is because some landslides go through an interval of slowly accelerating creep that at first may not be noticed.

Most landslides occur without public warning. Public warning generally can be given only after landslides have started to occur. Anybody seeing a landslide, or suspecting that a landslide might occur, must decide their own course of action. For their own safety, they must decide whether to remain in their current position or to evacuate. The most recognisable sign of danger is very heavy rain. In the future there may be regional forecast warnings of rainfall-triggered landslides, but this is not yet in place.