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Terrorism

New Zealand's relative isolation suggests the likelihood of a terrorist incident is less likely than other places in the world. However, terrorist incidents such as threats or hoaxes do occur. Incidents need to be treated as if they are real until the safety of the public is assured and the threat confirmed as false.

Everyone should be aware of the potential for terrorist incidents and take some basic precautions.

General Awareness

  • During your daily routines remain alert to any unusual activity, particularly in public areas where people naturally gather such as shopping malls, sporting events, train stations, bus terminals and airports.
  • Look out for abandoned packages and bags. Police deal with all such items as if they may contain an explosive device or other dangerous substance. If you see a suspect package leave it where it is.
  • Trust your instincts. If you feel something is wrong, ring the Police immediately. This has proved to be vital in many cases.
  • If you have information about possible bomb threats or other immediate threats of any kind, call the Police on 111.
  • Take time to appreciate your surroundings, so you can readily identify items that are out of place or have been recently introduced into the environment. Police attending incidents will ask you questions relating to items within your workplace, home and other surroundings.

During a Terrorist Attack

  • Stay inside or get inside quickly.
  • Listen to your radio or television for information and follow civil defence and police advice.
  • In a building explosion, get out of the building as quickly and calmly as possible. Stay low to the floor and exit the building as quickly as possible.
  • When approaching a closed door, use the palm of your hand and forearm to feel the lower, middle and upper parts of the door. If it is not hot, brace yourself against the door and open it slowly. If it is hot to the touch, do not open the door--seek an alternate escape route.
  • Heavy smoke and poisonous gases collect first along the ceiling. Stay below the smoke at all times. Cover your nose and mouth with a wet cloth.

After a Terrorist Attack

  • Be aware of any possible chemical or biological attack and phone 111 if you believe you've been exposed. If you can’t get to a hospital, shed all your clothes as quickly as possible (Don't bring the clothes inside because you may spread contamination). Go straight to the shower and thoroughly wash all body parts with coarse soap.
  • Don’t go sightseeing.
  • Don’t leave home unless advised to by Civil Defence.
  • If you have to evacuate, take your Survival Kit with you and turn electricity and gas off at the mains.
  • If you are trapped in debris:
    • Use a flashlight.
    • Stay in your area so that you don't kick up dust. Cover your mouth with a handkerchief or clothing.
    • Tap on a pipe or wall so that rescuers can hear where you are.
    • Use a whistle if one is available. Shout only as a last resort--shouting can cause a person to inhale dangerous amounts of dust.