Hunker down, stay safe and other key information
Published on 29 January 2023
Photo: Emergency crews and contractors are responding to surface flooding on State Highway 25, south of Whangamatā. The road is now closed.
The Coromandel is now isolated and Civil Defence urge people to stay off the roads and avoid travel at all costs.
“This is a very dynamic and fast-moving situation. I’ve been attending a number of emergency management meetings and calls with staff and agencies involved in helping us through this storm and I want to assure our communities that we’re on it,” says our Mayor Len Salt. “Our number one priority is to ensure that everybody is safe. Then we need to allow our roading crews and emergency services to do their job.”
To do this, we urge you not to travel and stay home.
There is widespread flooding and the latest MetService forecast is for heavy rain to continue across the Coromandel for the next 12 to 18 hours with a warning in place through to 6pm tonight (Sunday 29 January). This combined with the high tide at 2.30pm will make any access and travel extremely difficult.
“We will update you as soon as possible, but for now please keep out of harms way and let the crews do their jobs,” says Mayor Len.
Civil Defence Controller Garry Towler also issues a firm message for everyone to hunker down and stay safe. “The conditions are dangerous, emergency services and contractors are totally maxed out already, don’t take risks,” he says.
“We expect ongoing slips, flooding and closures for the next few days,” says Mr Towler. See our website here for details.
Waka Kotahi NZTA advised that a large section of the road at the summit of State Highway 25A between Kōpū and Hikuai collapsed yesterday. It will be closed until further notice and Waka Kotahi will be advising us on how long it will take to re-open. It will not be a short-term fix.
Whilst this part of State Highway remains closed, additional pressure will be placed on our local roading network. We’ve limited access to our local roads through the storms, to help preserve those assets, however it may take a week or more after the bad weather stops to properly assess and open up all local roads.
Our Mayor Len will continue to push the need for NZTA to invest in our route security by road and by sea.
“We are working a Road Resilience Plan with local government. We’ve got to get our district to a point where the network is more resilient, but it’s a much bigger fix than just clearing slips now,” says Mayor Len.
Other key information to note:
Refuse Transfer Stations closed: The Tairua, Whangamatā and Coromandel Refuse Transfer Stations are closed. See tcdc.govt.nz/rts for more information.
Coromandel water notice: Coromandel residents please conserve water for approximately the next 48 hours. The very heavy rain we have had over the past few days, and set to continue, has meant that the stream we draw water from is carrying a heavy sediment load. This means the water treatment plant has to process at a much slower rate due to the additional sediment in the water, or even be shut off at times. As a result, our treated water storage is lower than normal, which looks set to be the case until the water source becomes cleaner. If residents could please be mindful of their water use at this time, it would be much appreciated.
Whangamatā wastewater: Whangamatā residents please do not swim or take shellfish from the Whangamatā Estuary until further notice. The very heavy rain has caused an overflow of partially treated wastewater from the Whangamatā wastewater plant to enter the Whangamatā Estuary overnight. Whilst the overflow has ceased, it is unsafe for the public to swim or take shellfish at this time and we are putting up notices to that effect at key locations.
Road conditions: We urge you not to travel and stay home.
See our website and Facebook page for local roading conditions. If you see anything on our local roads, let us know on 07 868 0200 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For State Highways, keep an eye on their website or contact 0800 4 HIGHWAYS (0800 44 44 49).
Check before you travel with | Thames-Coromandel District Council Facebook | Waka Kotahi/NZTA | MetService