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Red MetService Heavy Rain Warning For West Coast Of Te Waipounamu/the South Island, Wednesday To Friday

South Island drivers and residents are urged to be ready for extremely heavy rain from the early hours of Wednesday along the West Coast, says Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency.

A Red MetService warning, reserved for the most extreme storms, was issued today.

“People need to assess how urgent their trip is before heading out on the West Coast, Wednesday and Thursday,” says Waka Kotahi Journey Manager Tresca Forrester.

“Roads will be affected and driving will be treacherous in such heavy downpours. People may face delays.”

A similar storm system caused significant flooding and high river levels in Buller and Marlborough mid last year, MetService reminds people.

MetService is predicting more than half a metre of rain near the mountains, inland Westland, from 1 am Wednesday to Thursday evening, with thunderstorms (over 42 hours). At the glaciers there could be 300mm of rain.

Further rain is forecast for Thursday night into Friday across Westland into Buller.

“Westland is a difficult place to clear slips in a hurry especially if there is ongoing rockfall or vegetation blocking the highway, even with our crews doing their best. People need to let their family and friends know if they are going to be travelling and what their expected timeline is.

“There are several patches with no cell coverage in South Westland,” says Ms Forrester.

Orange warnings beyond Westland – Otago/Canterbury headwaters, Tasman District

MetService Orange warnings cover the headwaters of the Otago and Canterbury lakes and rivers, and also Fiordland and Tasman.

In Tasman the Orange warning covers places like Tākaka Hill as well as the Whangamoas between Blenheim and Nelson.

(Orange warnings mean that people need to be ready to take action. Disruptions are possible, with risk to people, animals and property.)

Radio updates on the West Coast – frequencies:

· Coast FM 94.5 Franz Josef

· 99.5 Westland

· 100.3 Hokitika

· Gold 91.5FM Westland

· Newstalk ZB 103.5FM Westland

· 105.9FM Hokitika

· Radio Hauraki 105.1FM Westland

· RNZ Concert 95.5FM Westland

· RNZ National 101.1 Westland

· SENZ 89.1FM Westland

· The Hits 90.5FM South Westland

· 93.1FM Westland

· 97.1FM Hokitika

· ZM 89.9FM Westland

Plan ahead for a safe, enjoyable journey. Keep up to date with:

· COVID-19 services update: nzta.govt.nz/COVID19

· Traffic updates: journeys.nzta.govt.nz/traffic

© Scoop Media

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