Update at 3pm
Farmers in the Piako River catchment are being warned to be careful where they put their stock, with concerns that some riverside areas may still flood despite an end to the recent heavy rains.
“The heavy rain has stopped and we are starting to see reductions in water levels in waterways and pastures. However, it will take several days before flood waters recede. Much of the floodwater has originated from the hills to the west of the Hauraki Plains rather than within the main river systems,” said Waikato Regional Council Hauraki and Coromandel manager Adam Munro.
“As water works its way down the river system after the bad weather, there’s potential for further areas to flood so farmers need to factor this into their choices of where they put stock.”
The council has also stressed that overtopping of some stopbanks is expected, resulting in floodwaters getting into paddocks. Overtopping of these stopbanks is part of the flood system design. Many of these paddocks are designated ponding areas.
“Landowners with concerns are welcome to discuss any problems they’re having and we will support them where we can.”
The council warned yesterday that following the recent heavy rains various river levels around the region, including the Piako’s, will take some time to recede.
“We will continue to monitor water levels and any resulting flood damage or risk in the Hauraki Plains area,” said Mr Munro.
Meanwhile, there has been some positive news today when it comes to the lower Waikato River system with the outflow from Lake Karapiro due to be reduced later today, which will help ease pressures on river levels downstream, said regional hazards manager Rick Liefting.
“But, while there may be some reduced risk of further significant rain mid next week, there may be further impacts from another system towards the end of the week.
“So we’ll keep the situation with rivers, surface flooding and the weather under close watch and advise the public of any issues they need to be aware of,” said Mr Liefting.
Our attached photos are from a flight over the Hauraki Plains yesterday. They show: