• Fri. Mar 24th, 2023

People living on Wellington’s south coast and the Wairarapa coast who have been impacted by bad storms in the past are being advised to leave home ahead of Tuesday’s polar blast.

Jun 28, 2021

People living on Wellington’s south coast and the Wairarapa coast who have been affected by bad storms in the past are being advised to leave home ahead of Tuesdays expected polar blast.
If your home has been impacted by past swell and storm events or have concerns, arrange accommodation with friends and family, an update from the Wellington Region Emergency Management Office (WREMO) read on Monday night.
The advice was in place for Tuesday afternoon through to Wednesday afternoon. Those who didnt have anywhere else to go were advised to call their local council for assistance.
A polar blast making its way across the country from the Antarctic ice shelf was forecast to create some hairy conditions for the Wellington region on Tuesday, with swells of up to 5 metres expected.
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The weather event was potentially on par with that of the 2013 Matariki storm which saw power cuts hit 30,000 homes, 932 emergency calls for help in a six-hour period, and reports of “trees down, flooding, fences blown away, roofs lifting.
MetService has issued a heavy-swell warning for the south coast from 6am on Tuesday through to 11pm on Wednesday. The most dangerous times are during the high tides at 8.24am and 8.54pm on Tuesday, and 9.18am and 9.48pm on Wednesday.
Tuesdays waves are forecast to be bigger than those in April 2020, which required evacuations in some coast suburbs. Cook Strait ferry services operated by Interislander had been cancelled on Tuesday and potentially Wednesday, while Bluebridge was warning passengers of potential disruptions.
The regions set to be hit the hardest on Tuesday included whiro Bay, Island Bay, Houghton Bay, Lyall Bay, Moa Point, Reef, Flax, Eve and Breakers Bays, Seatoun and Karaka Bays.
Large waves are expected in the inner harbour area at Petone and Eastbourne, but the impacts weren’t expected to be as significant as that for the South Coast.
Chris Loveday put out sandbags with the help of his neighbours on Monday.
whiro Bay resident Chris Loveday, whose home was badly damaged by waves last April, was on Monday putting sandbags around his house in preparation.
The south and east Wairarapa Coast were also to be affected Ocean Beach, Palliser Bay, the mouth and spit of Lake Onoke, Lake Ferry, Te Kopi, Whatarangi, Ngawi, Mangatoetoe, Cape Palliser, Riversdale, Castlepoint, Whakataki, Mataikona and Mataikona Road.
Updated modelling released on Monday night showed the high tide on Tuesday morning was likely to result in similar damage to the Owhiro Bay weather event last year that saw waves crash over the road.
The bad weather was forecast to continue through to Tuesday evening, with more significant impacts, similar to the 2013 storm, expected due to the evening tide.
People living close to swell and surf exposed coastlines should be prepared for the likely possibility of wave overtopping and flooding of roads, WREMO warned.
The emergency management office also warned of potential property damage, debris and driftwood scattering, and potential road closures due to sand and gravel. Anyone who had their homes damaged by storms in the past was being told to prepare for these potential impacts again.
WREMO advised residents to pack a 24-hour grab bag with necessities, bring pets inside, move important items out of harms way, and check on neighbours who might need support. People were also being reminded to avoid affected areas, stay out of the water and take extra care on coastal roads.
Instances of road debris and damage could be reported to the location council, and anyone requiring emergency assistance should call 111.