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All Quiet Overnight As Rivers Drop

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
All Quiet Overnight As Rivers Drop

River levels are dropping steadily all over Southland and both Environment Southland and the Southland Civil Defence Emergency Management Group are expecting that most rivers will cease to be in a state of flood today.

Large amounts of farmland still remain under water, and are likely to be waterlogged for several days to come.

Met Service has issued a severe weather warning for Fiordland and is forecasting up to 50mm of rain to fall north of Doubtful Sound from 10am until 5pm today. However Group Controller Neil Cruickshank said it should not cause problems.

The Mataura River peaked at Seaward Downs near the coast overnight and is now 2.35 metres above normal and dropping steadily. Levels in the Taramoa Ponding Area are still high after peaking yesterday evening. Duty Floodwarning Officer Karl Erikson said that the water would drain slowly over several days.

There is still widespread surface flooding with roads closed in many areas. Motorists are asked to respect all roading signage.

Neil Cruickshank said that it would take several days, if not weeks, to gather a full picture of the losses, including damage to public assets like stopbanks, roads and bridges, and private property. Farmers and others whose property has been affected by the floods can contact Environment Southland from tomorrow morning (Wednesday) and describe any damage that has occurred.

This, together with reports from local authorities and other agencies, would help establish the extent of the problem and the Southland CDEM Group will be able to assess what level of recovery support is needed.

Anyone who has suffered loss or damage through the floods can either e-mail brief details to service@es.govt.nz or phone Environment Southland tollfree on 0800 76 88 45 between 8am and 5pm. The Council's catchment staff will follow up reports of damage to stopbanks as river levels drop.

Many rural roads are still affected by surface water. Please refer to the New Zealand Transport Agency 24 Hour Call Centre 0800 44 44 49 and website www.nzta.govt.nz for information about State Highways and the Southland District Council www.southlanddc.govt.nz about local roads. Full information about the state of the river levels and rainfall at each site is on Environment Southland's website www.es.govt.nz and is also on the Council's automated phone information service 03 2115010.

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