The State of National Emergency first declared on 14 February has been extended a further seven days for the Tairāwhiti and Hawke’s Bay areas, Minister for Emergency Management, Kieran McAnulty announced today.
The Minister said the extension would help the regions to manage the continuing impacts from Cyclone Gabrielle.
“The impact of Cyclone Gabrielle continues to be deeply felt by many communities in the North Island,” said Mr McAnulty.
“In the the Tairāwhiti and Hawke’s Bay regions, thousands of people are still unable to return to their homes due to flood damage.
“While together we’ve made some serious progress, the mahi is ongoing and there are still major road access issues for some communities.
“We need to keep coordinating this response at a national level in these areas to ensure we are properly supporting the Tairāwhiti and Hawke’s Bay Civil Defence Emergency Management Groups, and coordinating the personnel and equipment needed to transport essential supplies into the affected areas,” he said.
The Minister said he also intends to include Wairarapa into a national transition period, after consultation with local councils. The national transition period enables remedial works to be carried out, for example to restore access to cut-off properties or make temporary infrastructure repairs.
“This has been a real team effort and it’s been heartening to see people from across the country come together and support these communities in their time of need.”
I want to thank everyone who has picked up a shovel to help a mate or even someone they didn’t know, those that opened their home to someone in need, or who has volunteered their time and skills to help these communities. Kia kaha,” Mr McAnulty said.