Cyclone Gabrielle update 10 – Outreach team headed to Ākitio

Published 16 Feb 2023

After the Herbertville convoy left this morning, a second joint Tararua effort to conduct welfare needs assessments and building inspections left to check in on the Ākitio community.  An access route to Ākitio was established by council roading teams late on Wednesday. This route is only passable by 4x4 vehicles and the emergency services and is not for public use.

The team visiting Ākitio consists of volunteers from Rangitāne o Tamaki nui-ā-Rua, Ngāti Kahungunu ki Tāmaki nui-a-Rua, Councillor Sharon Wards, and council staff who will assess the community’s immediate needs and survey buildings.  In addition, a council water team will assess the status of the Ākitio water treatment plant.

Tracey Collis, Mayor of the Tararua District said “I would like to thank everyone involved on this task for stepping up and helping us connect with Ākitio to find out the needs and challenges of their community, the route is treacherous and has many dangers and obstacles and we all wish them a safe trip ”

Separately, council efforts to open a route has allowed private communications staff to  attempt to reach the telecommunications tower serving Ākitio and Herbertville where they hope to restore telephone connectivity as soon as possible.