We maintain, modify and extend the stormwater disposal and land drainage systems to manage surface water run-off from all urbanised catchments and to minimise flood damage. Stormwater pipe systems are not designed to handle all storm situations. Storm events greater than those the system has been designed for will result in some surface flooding. These will ideally occur down predetermined overland flow paths.
We maintain, modify and extend the stormwater disposal and land drainage systems to manage surface water run-off from all urbanised catchments and to minimise flood damage.
Our stormwater infrastructure includes:
- 120km of pipes
- 32km of open drains
- 2,769 catch pits along roads
- One dam and 19 ponds
- Seven pumping stations – all servicing the Waihi Beach area.
Heavy rain and flooding
Floods are New Zealand’s number one hazard in terms of frequency, losses and declared civil defence emergencies.
When heavy rain is forecast for the Western Bay District, Council has a process in place for both the utilities and transportation departments to undertake pre-heavy weather inspections.
There are a number of locations in the stormwater network that Council’s maintenance staff check to ensure stormwater can flow uninterrupted.
Council encourages residents to take a proactive approach to clear debris from gutters and drains on their properties and to check roadside culverts on/near their driveways to ensure they are not blocked with debris.
The best thing residents can do to help is to let Council know before a heavy rain event if there are problems you’ve spotted that could contribute to flooding – such as blocked drains/culverts etc.
How ready are you?
Here are some tips:
- Develop an emergency plan for your household or business
- If you are a farmer or have a lifestyle block consider how and where you will relocate stock to higher ground
- Prepare a getaway kit (in case you have to leave home in a hurry)
- Where possible, move pets and animals inside or to a safe place
- Make sure you have the appropriate household and contents insurance and keep those details handy
- Stay informed. Severe weather events usually provide some time for warning and for you to take some preparedness actions
- If you live in a flood prone area consider storing sandbags to protect your home should the need arise.
What to do if your place is flooding
- Listen to your local radio stations as emergency management officials will be broadcasting the most appropriate advice for your community and situation
- If you have a disability or need support, make contact with your support network
- Put your household emergency plan into action and check your getaway kit
- Be prepared to evacuate quickly if it becomes necessary
- Where possible, move pets inside or to a safe place, and move stock to higher ground
- Lift valuable household items and chemicals as high above the floor as possible
- Fill bathtubs, sinks and storage containers with clean water in case water becomes contaminated
- Turn off utilities if told to do so by authorities as it can help prevent damage to your home or community. Unplug small appliances to avoid damage from power surges
- Do not attempt to drive or walk through floodwaters unless it is absolutely essential.
Stay up to date
If the weather is bad enough to be determined a Civil Defence risk the most up to date information and advice can be found by following Bay of Plenty Civil Defence on Facebook.
Bay of Plenty Regional Council has a Duty Flood Manager who:
- Monitors weather forecasts and monitoring sites.
- Determines level of response and mobilise teams as required.
- Issues warning to landowners and public.
- Works with field operations staff to monitor pump stations and other infrastructure during rainfall events.
- Responds to queries and concerns from the public.
- Liaises with District and City Councils, Civil Defence and Dam Operators.
Waihi Beach Reservoir Dam
This water catchment reservoir has a strict operational procedure for when heavy rain is forecast.
When weather conditions for moderate to heavy rain are forecast within a 24-hour period, it is essential for the reservoir to be partially emptied to prevent spill over.
Under the management procedure, the pond penstock valve is half-opened to drain the water in advance of the rainfall. The valve remains open during the rainfall event.
Council does not empty the pond every time it rains. A weather warning from the Met Service will normally trigger a lowering of the pond.
It is Council’s intention to keep the pond one-third full at all times so that the habitat for fish, eels and other aquatic species is not damaged.
Flood modelling shows which areas might be flooded in an extreme rainfall event and to what depth they would get flooded.
Council’s natural hazard maps show a number of different types of flooding.
District Plan maps identify floodable areas in most urban areas as well as many rural areas.
For further information on flooding, and to view the above maps, these can be viewed on our natural hazards webpage.
Please visit PowerCo's website.
State highway road closures
The NZ Transport Agency has a live journey planner map on their website detailing all road closures.