Napier braces for more rain, after the city received more than twice the average monthly rainfall in 24 hours – causing one flood in every 250 years and leading to the emergency
Although the rain has now subsided, the city is not out of the woods, with rain watch in place until 10 am on a Wednesday
Many schools did not open their doors on Tuesday and 800 homes were still without electricity.
Danny Gove, Relationship Manager for Unison Electricity Company, said that many residents are preparing for a second night without electricity
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“As the floodwaters recede slowly allowing crews to access Unison’s assets, flood damage has proven more difficult than expected The depth of water in some areas has damaged our high voltage assets, such as transformers and switchgear units”
Given the current forecast of more rain, Gove said customers in the wider Napier region should also prepare for blackouts.
Mayor of Napier Kirsten Wise said the first priority was caring for the vulnerable, and the Marinoy, Primay and Bluff Hill regions were the priority areas
Wise said that at this point it was not clear when the state of emergency would be lifted.
“What we need to be aware of is the change in our world, in terms of climate change and other factors. Are we going to witness events like this more frequently and do we need to start investing in our infrastructure for the future?”
Wise said the region had witnessed « more air events than we had hoped for » and that the council was « rapidly following up on a number of projects to deal with in the future. »
District Director Ken Cooper said that if residents have any safety concerns or don’t feel safe call 111
Sixteen properties on Napier Hill were badly damaged, and a Palmerston North search and rescue team was working with Napier City Council to assess the damage
Cooper said there have been significant flooding in low-lying suburbs, including Marinoy and Primaye, and the defense forces have assisted with fire and emergency operations to assess these areas
At 5 p.m. on Tuesday, a team of civil defense personnel, the Vines, the Red Cross and the Napier City Council assessed 106 properties
“Of these assessments, 16 were identified as uninhabitable and residents were evacuated,” Cooper said.
Police spent the night outside, including transporting stranded doctors to Hook Bay Hospital’s emergency department for their shifts
Additional personnel were purchased to assist, although some Hawk Bay officers were out of action, dealing with floods in their homes
Hock Bay District Police Chief Janet Park said residents in Mariwa and Onkawa should stay indoors until flood waters recede, and all Napier residents who do not need to travel should stay home.
People should not drive their cars in flood waters, and people in flood-affected areas should stay indoors because the water was contaminated, says Fire and Emergency
Health medical officer Nick Jones said people should not eat any food that was in contact with flood water
He said, « Children should be kept away from flood water and play in ponds, which may be contaminated with sewage water. »
Ian MacDonald, the financial comptroller for the Civil Defense Emergency Management Group, said the area is preparing for more rain in the next 12 hours.
According to projections, MacDonald said that it is expected to rain at a rate of 4 mm per hour
Regional council engineers advised that the rainfall « will not cause a problem » for rivers and streams.
Earlier, Candice Burger, a resident of Nuffield Ave., said that the water on the road outside her home had reached her hip, and that her new fence had been completely washed away
The family went out at around 5:30 p.m. last night to buy supplies, but on their way home at 630 p.m. the water was high enough to disable the car that three people had to push into the driveway while her nine-year-old daughter was driving. p>
While the situation was stressful, she said the community has been great at supporting each other
Two of those people are Nirvana Anas and Dylan Rosser, who jumped into a kayak to get out and check people, took supplies for them, and evacuated them if needed
“We saved some children from some houses this morning, but we walk around and see if any of the elderly people need any supplies, and we can go get them,” said Anas.
His bag was filled with a thermos of hot water for those without electricity
“Most of the people are fine, but their homes, some of them are deep underwater, which is what worries them.”
“There is a lot of garbage floating around, so we’re just going to go around and help people as much as we can”
Niwa recorded rainfall of 237 mm in Nelson Park in Southern Napier on Monday night, more than four times on a regular November day. This was not far from the city record, reaching 297 mm on June 3, 1963.
MetService meteorologist Thomas Adams said the airport received 124 millimeters of rain in 24 hours to 6 a.m. Tuesday, twice the monthly average for November of 66 millimeters.
While the downpour is unlikely to be heavy on Tuesday, Adams urged caution as rivers in the area were rising
* In cases of emergency or safety concerns, call emergency services 111
Flood, Napier, New Zealand, Hawkes Bay
World News – African Union – Napier prepares for more rain after « one flood event in 250 years »
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