Gisborne community clean up following big flood

The clean-up process got underway in Gisborne today after the region experienced its heaviest rainfall of the year last night, causing major surface flooding.

It's the worst flooding locals have seen in the area for decades, with thick muddy silt left in its wake.

Fraser Brown says, “We haven't seen flooding down here since Bola, so over 30 years.”

Last night the Tūranganui River rose above sea level causing surface flooding to much of the riverside homes, but the concern today is sewage and cleaning up logs and debris.

Gisborne Mayor, Meng Foon says, “One of the major worries are the farmers and getting the road cleared from all the slips and flooding.”

Huge trees were split during the stormy conditions with locals putting in hours and hours to make their homes liveable again.

Chris Teneti says, “It's been huge. We've been here since about 8am this morning and Todd and I have just been sweeping all this mud just with a broom and a water blaster.”

Todd Greene says, “It's been very difficult, exhausting work. My back is very sore doing all this work today, but the main thing is that we are all still safe.”

Gisborne is not completely out of the clear just yet, with three more days of rain predicated for the region.