Waikato escapes worst effects from Lusi


16 March 2014, 07:52 AM

0730 hours Waikato Civil Defence Emergency Management Group says it’s fortunate the Waikato region seems to have escaped relatively unscathed from the effects of Cyclone Lusi.

"Despite fears of significant impacts as Lusi passed through we have had only local incidents due to the heavy rain and high winds that have occurred,” said group controller Lee Hazlewood.

It had been planned to have the group emergency coordination centre in Hamilton staffed 24/7 over the weekend but last night the decision was made to deactivate the centre, continuing a monitoring role through the group’s 24-hour duty officer.

Mr Hazlewood noted there was some moderate flooding in rivers and streams running off the Coromandel and Kaimai Ranges due to heavy rain. But no major or widespread issues were reported. Blustery conditions and rough seas have been another feature of the weather but, again, there have been no reports of major or widespread problems due to these factors.

“Conditions and forecasts in the Waikato last night were such that we felt we could stand people down from an actual centre activation,” said Mr Hazlewood.

I’d like to extend a big thank you to all civil defence staff at the centre, plus those in civil defence operations in other parts of the region and our emergency services colleagues. Everyone pulled together really well to prepare for Cyclone Lusi and this shows the very good level of cooperation that exists between agencies.

“I’d also like to thank news media who did an excellent job of alerting people to the risks posed by Lusi and what Waikato people could do to prepare for a big storm.”

Waikato Civil Defence will continue to track weather conditions generally, as well as river levels and coastal conditions, and provide relevant advice to the public where necessary.

 

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