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Published: 2008-08-01 00:00:00

Farmers and other land owners near the Waipa and Waikato rivers could expect ponding on their properties to last for at least 3-4 more days as the flood peak following this week’s storms works its way through the system.

Environment Waikato emergency management officer Adam Munro said surface flooding in the low lying areas adjacent to the main river channels was unable to drain into the swollen rivers.

“This is unlikely to change until the river levels drop substantially. The water is ponding behind stop banks and flood gates which are necessary to protect the land from direct flooding from the rivers,” he said.

Farmers should expect surface water to lie on their paddocks for several days.

“We are advising landowners that the flood peaks will take a number of days to pass down the river and more rain is forecast,” Mr Munro said.

Environment Waikato’s emergency response team is monitoring the upper Waipa and lower Waikato river catchments closely as rain continues to fall on already saturated land.

Another period of stormy weather is expected over the Waikato region this weekend, with a deep, fast-moving low bringing strong wind and heavy rain to many places.  Up to 50-70mm of rain is forecast in the King Country from Saturday afternoon through to Sunday afternoon. 

“We are expecting both the lower Waikato and Waipa rivers to keep rising over the weekend, but at this stage we are expecting our flood control schemes to cope well and keep water contained within the stopbanks,” Mr Munro said.

Environment Waikato staff will continue to alert district councils, land owners, Civil Defence and other agencies as flood alarms are triggered and operational staff will continue checking flood pumps and stopbanks.