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Few issues overnight but monitoring to continue

Media advisory

10.20am on 31 July 2008

Few issues overnight but monitoring to continue in Bay of Plenty

Environment Bay of Plenty staff are continuing to monitor the region's rivers and weather forecasts, but say most of the region's rivers peaked overnight and are beginning to fall.

Environment Bay of Plenty Rivers and Drainage Group Manager Ken Tarboton said the Whakatane River was expected to peak later this morning.

He said staff were working overnight to keep an eye on the region and despite the continued rain there were few issues to deal with.

"Bell Road drain at Papamoa spilled over last night with some rural flooding," said Mr Tarboton. "This morning we've sent two mobile pumps to help drain the area and the falling tide should help this. Close to Maketu the privately-owned Pukehina Drain also spilled over and we are on standby to provide assistance as needed," Mr Tarboton said.

"As the Kaituna River goes down we're planning on releasing some water from Lake Rotoiti into the river this morning, which will provide rafting guides with the flow they require for their weekend activities."

Mr Tarboton said the monitoring would continue during the next few days.

"We expect the worst of the storm has passed, there are still showers forecast for the next couple of days, and more rain expected at the weekend. Because the ground is already saturated from the past two storm events we're asking people to be cautious around streams and rivers because if there is any localised heavy rain water levels could rise quickly," Mr Tarboton said.

"We're also asking the public to let us know if they see anything out of the ordinary that could affect the ability of our stopbanks to do their job."

Also overnight no navigational safety issues have been reported and no boats have broken free from their moorings.

Members of the Harbour Master team are at Omokoroa assisting with a trimaran that was blown upside down on Monday night. A barge with a crane is currently in the water at Omokoroa working on recovering the trimaran.

Overall Tauranga Harbour is looking much calmer this morning

People can visit Environment Bay of Plenty's website at www.envbop.govt.nz and click on the live monitoring link to see updates of river and rainfall levels around the region.


ENDS

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