Topic: Flooding

Unprecedented rainfall causes Rotorua flooding

By Mere McLean
  • Waikato/Bay of Plenty

Ngongotaha residents are picking up the pieces after an unprecedented 100mm of rainfall sparked a state of emergency yesterday and the evacuation of 30 homes.

Keith Pedersen has come to help his brother who has been living in Ngongotaha for three years.

“It's a bit of a shame when a riverbank fails...the rain was so heavy I don't know that there was a lot they can do, to be quite honest,” says Pedersen.

Yesterday the Ngongotaha Stream had burst its banks in some areas which caused water to enter into a number of properties.

From his house Steve Brake saw the water rushing in from the river.

“Get that river sorted.  That's always the damage, you know.  I walked up that river a couple of months back- there's overhanging trees it needs a clean out,”.

There are 18 homes in Rotorua that remain vacant due to flood damage.

Rotorua Lakes Council is urging those who have been affected to register with them.  They are also seeking government assistance.

Minister of Civil Defence, Kris Faafoi says, “We have helped with mayoral relief funds in the past.  We have to go back to Wellington and make sure we do that quickly to make sure the families get assisted if it's needed”.

Mayor of Rotorua, Steve Chadwick says, “No one can get over how quick this was, how tumultuous it was".

There is a health warning in place for the areas affected by the floods.

Council wants people to avoid showering, washing and toilet flushing to reduce the impact on the sewerage system.