Tuesday 20 November, 2018
Heavy rain, strong winds and the aftermath of snow are all continuing to have an impact on much of Otago. Many rivers are in flood, particularly in Clutha and Dunedin, while there is widespread disruption to travel.
Emergency Management Otago is closely monitoring the impacts of heavy, steady rain on Otago rivers, particularly in coastal areas from the Catlins to Dunedin, and the aftermath of heavy snow inland. Inland, rockfalls and surface flooding are causing disruption to travel, with several highways and numerous local roads closed or passable only with care. Police and Councils are advising people to postpone all non-essential travel.
The Dunedin City Council has activated its emergency operations centre but has not declared a state of emergency. Clutha District Council is responding to multiple roading issues while Central Otago District Council responded to flooding in Roxburgh overnight on Monday.
DCC has sandbags available from the Memorial Park carpark and Hotel Taieri carpark in Mosgiel and the Ice Stadium carpark in South Dunedin, and volunteers were earlier called on to bring a shovel and help fill them. DCC also asked Dunedin residents to reduce the load on the wastwater system by not showering or doing laundry today.
Otago Regional Council reports that the Riverside spillway gates were opened late this afternoon. This diverts water into a ponding area that is part of the lower Taieri Flood Protection Scheme, and reduces the effects of flooding on properties downstream at Henley.
Other catchments are being carefully watched, including the Water of Leith, Lindsay Creek and Silver Stream in Dunedin, and the Clutha and Pomehaka Rivers.
Check water levels and flows here: www.orc.govt.nz/managing-our-environment/water/water-monitoring-and-alerts
Several state highways are closed or impacted by flooding and rockfalls. NZTA is posting updates here: www.journeys.nzta.govt.nz/traffic