The cause of false alarm from a number of fire station warning sirens across the Bay of Plenty last night is still unknown - but Civil Defence says people should always be ready.
Fire and Emergency said the sirens, which were first triggered about 9.15pm, went off due to a system fault and that the exact cause is still under investigation.
Some residents in the Bay of Plenty thought the sound signalled a tsunami, but the National Emergency Management Agency confirmed they were sirens triggered inside fire stations across the east coast.
Police said many of the reports of siren activations were from the Waikato and Bay of Plenty regions.
FENZ chief executive Rhys Jones told TVNZ1's Breakfast this morning that "false alarms shouldn’t happen because it may lead to a cry wolf situation".
"We're still investigating, still working with our other emergency partners to find out what happened there - we are sorry," Mr Jones said.
Clinton Naude, Civil Defence's director of emergency management for Bay Of Plenty, said they recognise false alarms like this can be frustrating or scary for some, but said they should reinforce the fact that people need to be ready at all times.