Whakatāne coastal area evacuation order

13/04/2017

Whakatāne District Council has ordered the evacuation of all vulnerable coastal areas.

Due to the extreme risk of storm surges and coastal inundation, the decision has been made to evacuate all properties on:

-Ōhope's West End Road (mandatory evacuation)

-all beachfront properties on the seaward side of Pohutukawa Avenue, through to Te Akau Street.

-properties adjacent to the Maraetōtara Stream, Millers Stream and Wharekura Stream may also be vulnerable to storm surge travelling up the stream.

-harbourside streets Ōhiwa Parade and Liddon Parade; and a small number of properties on the southern side of Harbour Road along the harbour edge, may also be impacted and residents of those areas are also advised to self-evacuate. 

-all campgrounds at the western end of the Whakatāne District, including the DOC campground in Matatā (mandatory), Murphy's Holiday Camp, the Pikowai Campground (mandatory), Ōtamarākau freecamping area and the Thornton Beach Holiday Park (seaward side only) are being asked to evacuate.  

-residents of the Awatarariki fanhead area around Clem Elliot Drive are being asked to self-evacuate. 

The Council asks people to self-evacuate and stay with friends and family if possible, or go to the Civil Defence Centre at the Whakatane War Memorial Hall.

People should take pets with them, and ensure they are contained in pet carriers. 

Residents living in these areas who have neighbours who may be in need of help to evacuate are asked to offer assistance wherever possible.

All stream crossing points in Ōhope are considered to be vulnerable and people are advised to treat them with extreme care.

People who are in camper vans or motorhomes in the campgrounds should seek higher or sheltered ground as soon as possible but are advised to be aware of extreme wind conditions.

All stream crossing points in Ōhope are considered to be vulnerable and people are advised to treat them with extreme care.

Heavy rain and extreme winds are likely to coincide with the storm surge, increasing the risks associated with slips from District escarpments and trees falling onto properties and across roads. Whakatāne Civil Defence urges District residents to stay off the roads during the peak of the storm impact, from 6pm tonight onwards.

Anyone not in the evacuation zones, but who feels unsafe should also consider self-evacuating to a safe location.