Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Update from West Coast Emergency Management


West Coast Emergency Management

 17 August 2022

Prepared and waiting

Agencies across the West Coast have spent the last several days preparing for the significant weather event currently affecting the West Coast, and across New Zealand. 

The latest modelling is indicating an easing in event intensity around Westport. 

For the Buller River, the forecast flow range has come down to 4000 – 6000 cumecs. This is a reduction from yesterday’s forecast flow of 5000 – 7200 cumecs. 


While this event is still expected to bring significant flows to the Buller River, bank overtopping from the event is not expected, with flows similar to the first February event.  

The peak flows will occur tomorrow, early morning for Te Kuha and mid-morning for Westport. The Orowaiti Overflow will receive flows after 4000 cumecs. The tide is slightly higher than what was experienced during the February event. This may increase river levels in the Snodgrass area. 

Te Aroha Cook, West Coast Group Controller, said that observations will give confirmation of actual flows early tomorrow morning. 

“For Westport, if you experienced flooding in February, or are feeling vulnerable due to proximity to the Orowaiti, you may want to consider self-evacuation. There may also be stormwater ponding, surface flooding and stopbank seepage. Self-evacuation includes making arrangements for pets and lifting valuables.”

Further south, Civil Defence and supporting agencies are still expecting rivers to rise in Westland. Peak rain intensities are expected from late Wednesday afternoon into Thursday.

“We are watching the Hokitika River closely. We know that it is currently high and more rain is expected. Peak flows are anticipated to coincide on a falling tide.”  

Observations on the Wanganui and Waiho Rivers are ongoing through the event. 

“As the freezing level continues to rise we can also expect increasing snow melt which will impact our river flows, particularly as we move south through the region.”

Stock and animals should be moved from low lying rural areas, including Snodgrass. 

“Plan your journeys IF you need to go, but please just stay at home.”

Pigeon Post News

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