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Get ready for heavy rain – Civil Defence

Weather news for 9 May 2023.

The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) is encouraging people to get prepared as a new weather system brings significant rainfall over the next two days.

The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) is encouraging people to get prepared as a new weather system brings significant rainfall over the next two days.

The ground in many parts of the country is already saturated and with more heavy rain about to arrive there is an increased risk of flooding and landslides.

NEMA Director, John Price said: “We are facing a severe weather situation, where orange heavy rain warnings and thunderstorm watches have been issued for large parts of the motu.

“We ask that people keep up to date with MetService’s watches and warnings, follow their local CDEM group on their social accounts.”

He warned people to take care, be prepared and avoid unnecessary travel.

Mr Price says, “Given the amount of rain that has already fallen we want people to be aware that there is an increased possibility that there could be landslides. If you are driving be alert to areas of collapsed roading or slips of mud and rocks.

“NEMA has partially activated the National Coordination Centre (NCC) to support response agencies and Civil Defence Emergency Management (CDEM) Groups around the country as they respond.

“This is a widespread heavy rain event, and NEMA is engaging with CDEM Groups to ensure they have the resources they need.

“The Government stands ready to help the affected regions, some of which were badly hit during recent severe weather events in various parts of New Zealand.”

“We are in this together so check on your neighbours, friends and whanau,” said Mr Price.

Tips to get ready

What to do before heavy rain:

  • Have a plan
  • Clear debris from gutters and drains
  • Bring pets indoors and move farm animals to higher ground
  • Check on your neighbours

During heavy rain:

Follow the instructions of emergency services and the local CDEM groups and if you feel unsafe at any time, evacuate to higher ground.
Stay indoors and avoid driving during heavy downpours
Surface flooding and slips are possible and driving conditions may be hazardous.
Stay away from and out of water. Never try to walk, play, swim, canoe or drive in floodwater: even water just 15cm deep can sweep you off your feet, and half a metre of water will carry away most vehicles.
Your safety and that of others is critical.

After heavy rain:

  • Stay away from damaged areas. You might hamper rescue and other emergency operations and be at further risk from the residual effects of floods.
  • Look before you step. After a flood, the ground and floors may be slippery or covered with debris, including broken bottles and nails.
  • Help others if you can, especially people who may need extra help.

For more information on how to prepare go to the ‘Get Ready’ website.

The latest weather updates are available on the MetService website.

Image credit: Bob Clark

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