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Wild weather hits Hawkes Bay

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Heavy rain and wind have forced evacuations in Tai Rāwhiti and Hawke’s Bay as heavy rain and strong winds continue to hit the areas.

Police are going door-to-door to ensure residents leave safely. A State of Emergency was declared in Haumoana and Wairoa due to severe flooding and coastal inundation.

In Wairoa, the river rose to a five-year flood level, causing localized flooding. Mayor Craig Little declared the emergency, citing risks to lives and properties. Over 400 properties have been affected, with significant damage to more than 100 homes and structures. Evacuation centers have been set up in Wairoa War Memorial Hall and Haumoana School Hall, among other locations.

Severe weather has caused road closures and hazards. SH2 and SH35 highways are partially closed due to flooding and slips. Authorities advise caution when traveling in these areas.

The MetService has issued orange heavy rain and wind warnings for Tai Rāwhiti and Hawke’s Bay. The warnings extend until midday in Tai Rāwhiti and 9 pm in Hawke’s Bay. Although rain is expected to lessen, further showers are forecast through Friday.

Emergency services and civil defense are focused on ensuring safety and providing shelter for those displaced. The Wairoa town center remains safe, and power has been restored to most of the town. Both Wairoa and Heretaunga remain under a state of emergency as the community braces for ongoing challenges from the severe weather.

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