Gita: Storm sparks state of emergency in New Zealand


Gita: Storm sparks state of emergency in New Zealand

Medical supplies have been picked up in Nelson and flown to Golden Bay in the helicopter that's taking two cabinet ministers around parts of the upper South Island hit by former cyclone Gita.

Waves as high as 6.7 metres have been pounding the coast and a gust of 130 kilometres per hour (kmph) was reported in Hawera.

A state of emergency was declared in several areas, but has now mostly been lifted.

Today The Country has a rural report straight from the horse's mouth as Jamie gets the inside information on how farmers are dealing with New Zealand's unpredictable weather patterns.

Field crews from throughout the North Island arrived in Taranaki, Whanganui and Manawatū on Wednesday to help with the restoration effort.

Response manager Erica Adams said the region had been well prepared for Gita because Cyclone Fehi came through just a few weeks ago.

"We have been working with Civil Defence authorities in areas affected by the storm and will continue to support them as required".

In Christchurch, a city still rebuilding following a devastating quake in 2011, the council said the wastewater system was "coming under pressure due to infiltration and inflow from the rain during the storm". She added that the national Civil Defence office in Wellington were also on standby.

Cyclone Gita hit the Pacific island nations of Fiji and Tonga last week, packing winds up to 275 kph (171 mph).

Some of the country's picturesque hiking tracks, popular with tourists, were closed and a stretch of State Highway One along the South Island's east coast was shut.



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