With king tides due from February 1-5, Hauraki District Council is working with MetService, Niwa and Waikato Regional Council to try to predict if there is likely to be any impact on coastal areas in our district, particularly along the Kaiaua coastline.
On Friday, January 5 a low-pressure system brought heavy rain and strong winds to most of the North Island.
The storm and tidal surges caused major flooding and damage to homes and properties in the Kaiaua Coast area including, Kaiaua, Whakatiwai, Waharau, and Pūkorokoro-Miranda. There was also major saltwater flooding of farms.
“At this stage the long range forecast is showing rain coinciding with this new king tide period and some potential wind, but we won't know how significant this might be until early next week,” says Council Civil Defence Controller Steve Fabish.
In the meantime, people in vulnerable coastal areas such as the Kaiaua Coast and, to a lesser extent, Whiritoa, are advised to start thinking about how they might prepare if, by chance, a weather event does occur.
“You should keep an eye on the MetService for the latest weather forecasts and be prepared with supplies just in case you are cut off.
“You should also put some prior thought into where you might self-evacuate to, such as friends and family, in the event you have to leave your home,” says Steve.
Other things to think about and plan for, in case they are needed, could include lifting things off the floor, covering gully traps and septic tank mushrooms with plywood, disconnecting and raising water pumps, putting plywood in front of exposed windows, moving vehicles to higher ground, and filling sandbags, which are available as usual from the Kaiaua Fire Station.
This week, the Council has spent some time removing large logs from the foreshore that may have the potential to affect properties. River mouths have also been cleared in case of heavy rain.
“Early next week we'll be working with Civil Defence to provide updates and keep people informed,” says Fabish.
“We also encourage you to continue to talk to each other, make sure you know your neighbours and any vulnerable people in the community and that you keep in touch to check if they're OK.”
An online hub for rainfall and flood related information has been set up by Waikato Regional Council to help people more easily keep up to date with any weather events in the region.