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Dunedin July Severe Weather update 9am

Dunedin July Severe Weather update 9am, Saturday 22 July 2017

Dunedin City Council staff and contractors are out assessing damage caused by heavy rain and flooding yesterday and overnight.

Surface flooding has affected roads around the wider city and forced some residents, in areas such as lower Outram, Mosgiel and the Taieri, to evacuate.

Dunedin Civil Defence Controller Sandy Graham says motorists should avoid all non-essential travel today across the roading network, but particularly in the Taieri and Peninsula areas.

“The forecast is for rain to ease today, but a state of emergency continues and DCC staff, contractors, emergency services and Civil Defence personnel continue to respond as quickly as they can to weather-related issues based on priority,” Ms Graham says.

“The Taieri River is expected to remain very high for some time due to the heavy rain which has fallen in the headwaters.”

From yesterday morning to 7am today, about 223mm of rain was recorded at Swampy Spur, and 114mm at Riccarton Road near Mosgiel. Musselburgh had recorded about 81mm.

“People need to be aware there will be widespread debris and damage on roads, and motorists will not be able to tell the depth of floodwaters. Avoid non-essential travel today and do not go rubbernecking,” Ms Graham says.

“If anyone is travelling, please be aware that contractors have run out of flooding signs. Please drive with caution. Not every area with surface flooding is signposted. We are looking to source more signs.”

A number of fords and roads will remain closed until they have been properly assessed.
A large slip on Portobello Road, close to King George Street, means access to Portobello and Broad Bay has been cut off. There are a number of other slips on the Otago Peninsula and access to Macandrew Bay is by Highcliff, Camp and Castlewood Roads.

Access via Highcliff Road is not possible due to current work repairing previous slips.

Ms Graham says a geotechnical assessment is being carried out at the Portobello Road slip site this morning. “The priority will be to establish access past the slip site to enable access for residents.”

An earlier slip close to the Harwood turn-off blocking the road will also need to be assessed.

A number of roads are closed due to flooding – a full list of road closures and conditions is available online at www.dunedin.govt.nz/road-conditions. State highway closures are on the NZ Transport Agency website at http://www.journeys.nzta.govt.nz/traffic/.

Power outages
Power has been lost to a number of areas overnight due to implications of the current weather.

The following areas in Dunedin City remained without power this morning:

- Old Brighton Road, Dunedin
- Green Island Bush Road, Dunedin
- St Leonards Drive, Dunedin
- Berwick, Henley, Dunedin
- Anzac Ave, Dunedin

Aurora Energy is working restore power as soon as possible in these areas. At this stage they are unable to provide a time of when power will be restored but will keep you updated as information becomes available. Power could be restored at any time so please treat all electrical equipment as live at all times.

Evacuations and welfare
About 100 households in the lower part of Outram were evacuated overnight because of water flowing into township near the substation at Huntly Road.

Flooding in parts of Mosgiel and the Taieri Plain has meant some residents have been evacuated.

The Army assisted Civil Defence in rescuing nine people trapped in and on cars on State Highway 87 early this morning. A unimog transported the occupants to safety.

We have made provisions for emergency accommodation for people who were evacuated, however it has not been required at this stage.

Anyone wanting to report flood-related issues with DCC services should call us on 03 477 4000 to report it. Anyone who feels their safety is in danger or who has water entering their house or business should call emergency services on 111.

Moana Pool closure
Due to the adverse weather conditions and flow-on effects of these, Moana Pool and Gym will be closed today (Sat 22 July).

Silverstream flood bank track
Dog owners taking their dogs along the Silverstream Flood Bank track in Mosgiel are advised to take extreme care. The high rainfall in the Silverstream catchment may sweep possum carcasses poisoned with 1080 downstream. Keep dogs on a lead at all times; carcasses will be extremely toxic. OSPRI has been asked to patrol at first light and remove any carcasses.

Information Centres
The Dunedin City Council is still operating two information centres, in South Dunedin and Mosgiel, as places where people can go for more information. The centres are currently staffed and are located at:

• Mosgiel – Fire Station Theatre, 3 Cargill Street
• South Dunedin – The Mercy Room, Catholic Social Services, 42 Macandrew Road

Keep up to date
For the public to keep up to date with what is happening and for advice about what to do, please see the DCC website, DCC social media, listen to the radio and use other media.
Please refer family, friends and neighbours to these communication channels.


Anyone with flood-related queries or issues should call 03 477 4000.


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