The rain may have stayed away but coastal Otago campers,
farmers and anglers are being warned of possible flooding
near rivers today following heavy rain in river catchments
Otago rivers and lakes were already running high yesterday,
prompting the Otago Regional Council to closely monitor river
and lake levels and alert farmers in areas such as the lower
Clutha, that they may have to move stock. People camping
along the banks of the Manuherikia River are also being
warned to beware rising water levels.
Heavy rain in the headwaters yesterday and early today will
take some time to work its way downstream, but Environment
Canterbury (ECan) Timaru duty flood controller Chris Fauth
said the Waitaki River was yesterday running at two and
a-half times its normal flow and , was not expected to peak
''It has been raining heavily in the upper catchment. Some of
the rain gauges up there have started to record
high-intensity rain - more than 20mm an hour.''
Mr Fauth said the lower Waitaki River was yesterday running
at between 1000cumecs and 1100cumecs. It was already at flood
level and was expected to rise ''significantly'' today.
''Anything at these levels or higher could bring issues. But
the higher and higher it gets the more likely it is that we
will get issues. It's a very unpredictable river and you
can't rule out even some minor overflows from the river, even
at the levels we are at now.