STATE OF EMERGENCY LIFTED FOR WAITOMO DISTRICT

The State of Emergency has been lifted for the Waitomo District by Waitomo District Mayor John Robertson at 9.37am this morning.

The State of Emergency declaration came into effect on Saturday evening and was initially to last seven days.

However, after a review of the weather forecast, a risk analysis of the current situation, and a recommendation from Waitomo District Council’s Civil Defence local controller, David Simes, Mayor Robertson was satisfied the district was no longer at serious risk.

“We are not out of the woods yet, however. There is still a lot of clean up to be undertaken, particularly on our roads, and several families have homes that need assessing for damage,” says Mayor Robertson.

“We made the right call to declare a state of emergency. The river level was rising in Te Kuiti and with additional rain forecast there was a real concern that there could be significant flooding across the township and wider District”

Council’s Civil Defence Emergency Management (CDEM) Team has been working around the clock to monitor and manage the impact of the weather event, and will continue to do so for the next short while.

“Support came in quickly from around the region and nationally – police, fire and emergency, St Johns, and the Ministry of Social Development. Council staff jumped in and gave up their weekend to assist. And then there was a fantastic community response, from neighbours checking on neighbours and the assistance of Te Kūiti Pā to make themselves available to anyone who needed assistance. Also, the work Inframax have been doing to get the roading network functioning again has been outstanding”

Support services are also still available.

A drop-in information hub is currently operating from Railway Building 3 on Rora Street. It is open from 10am to 3pm today.

Local MSD staff, Citizens Advice Bureau and Council staff will be available to provide support.

Te Kūiti Pā is also still open to those who need support.

Council’s 24/7 call centre is also available on 0800 932 4357.

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