Region's rivers slowly receeding

After a week of heavy rain, waterways across the Horizons Region are still full but slowly receding.

Ged Shirley, Horizons Regional Council controller during the rain event, says all catchments in the Region are still responding to the significant rainfall received. 

“There is no doubt that our rivers and streams relatively full at the moment, however they are starting to recede. We are aware there may be some more rain next week but to date MetService, who are the nationally recognised weather forecasting organisation, have not issued any rain watch or warnings for our Region.

“Given the nature of the saturated catchments, we will be on the look out for any significant rainfall forecasts and maintaining a close eye on catchment response to any further rain. Horizons operates a 24/7 monitoring and duty officer service so our communities can be assured we will be on alert.”

Horizons has spent the day assessing the impact of the rain event and continuing processes actioned earlier in the week.

“The coordinated response across the Region has been exceptional. Councils, Civil Defence agencies, communities and volunteers have certainly put in a lot of hours this week, with the assessment of roads and infrastructure likely to continue for a few more days.”

“The Q-West flood barriers were removed in Whanganui this morning. While an additional burst of rain elevated Manawatu River levels at Teachers’ College, resulting in the decision to leave the Moutoa floodgates open until approximately 4pm today.

“Looking ahead, next week we will be using the event to assess what steps would have been required for a regional recovery effort. We are fortunate that this hasn’t been necessary, however this week’s event provides us with a good opportunity to go through the process and ensure we are prepared for future events.”

Mr Shirley says in terms of ongoing welfare, a rural coordination group conference call is taking place this afternoon to discuss what needs there may be in the rural community.

“Our communities were quick to respond to evacuation messages and are a resilient group. While this event didn’t play out as predicted, it can still have an affect on people so please look out for each other and ask for support if you need it.”

Support is available from:

Your GP or local community health centre
Rural Support Trust 0800 RURAL HELP
Youthline 0800 376 633 or
In an emergency always call 111

For anyone who may require financial assistance please contact Work and Income on 0800 559 009 or visit 

Up-to-date information on river heights and rainfall is available via Horizons 24 hour toll-free Waterline 0508 4 FLOOD or via our Environmental Data.

For weather forecasting information please see