29 Jul 2012

River level alert as heavy rain forecast

2:54 pm on 29 July 2012

More heavy rain is due for eastern Waikato which the regional council says will put further pressure on already swollen rivers.

MetService has issued a severe weather warning of 80 to 120mm of rain from 11pm on Sunday to 3pm on Monday, with the heaviest falls on the Kaimai Ranges and the ranges of the Bay of Plenty.

A deluge earlier in the week has already saturated the Kaimai Ranges.

Waikato Regional Council's emergency management officer Greg Ryan says the infrastructure will cope, but he's urging people in the area to take extra care.

He says there is still a risk of rising river levels, slips and difficult conditions on the roads.

The council says rain could send the Piako and Waitoa rivers back up to levels seen earlier last week, while the Waihou could also come under pressure. No problems were expected for the Ohinemuri and Kauaeranga rivers at this stage.

Heavy rain warnings are also in place for Nelson and the south of Fiordland from Sunday and eastern Otago from Monday.