Grey and Buller rivers still rising, says Civil Defence

By Laura Mills

The Grey River at 7.30am, almost level with the old wharf. Photo / Greymouth Star
The Grey River at 7.30am, almost level with the old wharf. Photo / Greymouth Star

Both the Grey and Buller rivers were still rising at noon today, but Civil Defence said the rate had slowed.

A third emergency floodwall meeting was held in Greymouth just before midday, when the Grey River passed the 6m mark.

However, West Coast Regional Council chief executive Mike Meehan said the rate of the rise had slowed.

"We are thinking it probably won't go too much over this," Meehan said.

"And it's not too dissimilar for Buller."

It was "nowhere near" the point where they would consider evacuations.

"The rate of increase per hour is really slowing down."

High tide is at 4.08pm but Meehan said when the river was in full flood and with great velocity, the tide would not have as much impact.

Westport harbourmaster Mike Charles said it was still raining heavily at 11.30am when the river gauge at Te Kuha was about 9.5m.

The first stage alarm level for flood warning at Te Kuha is 7.4m.

"There's an incredible amount of trees and debris," Mr Charles said.

A high flood water level of 11.8m was recorded in the Buller River in August
1970.

- Greymouth Star

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