30 Jun 2009

Flood waters recede in Gisborne district

10:56 pm on 30 June 2009

Civil Defence says bad weather has improved and river levels in the Gisborne district have receded on Tuesday night.

Heavy rain has pelted the region throughout the day, swelling rivers in the region. More rain is expected overnight.

Earlier in the day, 12 people were evacuated from a number of settlements north of Tolaga Bay and there were concerns hundreds of people could be isolated by the flooding.

There were initial concerns that 500 people, who live in the town of Te Karaka, might be isolated overnight by the flooding.

However, roads into the township remained open late on Tuesday night.

Some settlements north of Tolaga Bay continue to be isolated by flood waters.

State Highway 35 between the bay and Tokomaru Bay was closed on Tuesday night.

Civil Defence controller for Gisborne District Jon Davies says while the roads into the town of Te Karaka are still open, he recommends people stay at home as there are many slips and trees.