Civil Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee says the best information he got yesterday as the Port Hills fire situation deteriorated was from the media.
Mr Brownlee made the admission in Christchurch today as he toured the area with Prime Minister Bill English.
He said: "I think the most accurate advice I was getting yesterday was from the media."
He said it was initially a Rural Fire Service matter, not a Civil Defence one.
He praised the work of firefighters and said the Government would need to look at how information was relayed to Wellington in such cases.
Mr English says the most important thing yesterday was not the flow of information to the Beehive.
* Corin Dann has full analysis of the political handling of the Port Hills disaster on special coverage from 5.30pm-7.30pm on TV1 tonight.