The Ministry of Civil Defence has unveiled a new emergency management system which it says will speed up its response to a big emergency.
The system, part of a $2.8 million upgrade of the ministry's National Crisis Management Centre, should be operational by June.
It is being set up by United States-based company E-Sponder, and is already used by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Australian government and some US states.
Civil Defence Minister John Carter says that in the past information was fed in from a number of sources, which had to be assessed in Wellington. But the new system provided live data for all agencies throughout the country.