Second wet weather hit expected for East Coast

By Talisa Kupenga

MetService is warning East Coast residents to remain vigilant and alert as more heavy rain is expected tonight. This comes after torrential rain has battered the region causing heavy flooding at Tolaga Bay causing road closures and evacuations.

The devastation of last night's storm visible this morning, and another storm is anticipated tonight.

Tolaga Bay resident William Maurirere says  "Everyone is calm but we worry about the farming families. Farming areas at Paroa, Mangatokerau, and Takapau."

Off Tolaga's Tauwhareparae Road is Mangaheia Station. From daybreak, residents took to waist-level waters to swim stock to dry land. The nearby Paroa and Mangatokerau roads were expected to be closed until Wednesday afternoon.

Maurirere says "I have seen the police, firefighters, and helicopters around the township so a lot of help is on-hand."

Civil Defence says round 20 people between Gisborne and Mangatokerau North of Tolaga self-evacuated. A family of three were airlifted from the rooftop of their home before it along with all their belongings were swept away by the floods.

"The farmland where their homes are is covered in silt. When they return to their homes no doubt there will be a lot of people bent over working hard taking part in the clean-up." 

A weather watch is in place for the area from 9pm tonight until 1pm tomorrow. Civil Defence says it is monitoring the situation, ready to respond.