Cyclone Gabrielle update 14 – General Update and Key Messages

Published 19 Feb 2023


The Tararua District remains under the National State of Emergency that was declared on Tuesday 14 February. This will remain in force for 7 days.

This update will cover:

  • Today’s focus
  • Plan for tomorrow
  • Update on roads, water and power
  • Other key information


Our three main priorities for today and heading into tomorrow are:

  1. Responding to community need (including future convoy planning)
  2. Gathering information on unaccounted people and property
  3. Capturing the intel gathered by our community outreach team (the convoy)

Today, the convoy visited Ti Tree Point and surrounding areas to conduct rural welfare needs assessments and supply drops. Our mission today was to make sure that this area is looked after and that we can meet any immediate or future needs.


Tomorrow, the convoy will be heading out to the Waione/Akaroa area to continue the community outreach and welfare needs assessments.

While the convoy are on the ground, our teams in the Emergency Operations Centre will be processing the needs assessments and coordinating supply deliveries and support. We’ll also be working to gather more information about the impacts of this event and capturing and assessing the intelligence gathered by our convoy teams and information coming through our customer services and Antenno app.


There are 35 roads closed, 20 of these are open to emergency vehicles only and there are 15 roads that are closed to all vehicles.

There are 3 roads open under caution, 6 roads that are single-lane, 2 roads that are only accessible to 4WD’s and residents and 3 roads that are closed to heavy vehicles.

Our teams are updating the road status on the Council website as information comes in. If you have new information about a road, please call us or report it using our Antenno app.

View current road status:


Pongaroa: The water treatment plant remains shutdown due to source water quality. Our teams will be out on Monday morning assessing this and, hopefully, restarting the water treatment plant. Water may be slightly discoloured – if it is, the best thing to do is run a cold outside tap until you see it run clear. The Boil Water Notice will remain in place until we have had 3 consecutive days of acceptable test results. We’ll provide another update on this tomorrow, in the meantime there is a water tank available at the community hall.­

Akitio: Akitio remains on a boil water notice until further notice and water is available at the Boat Club. The Water Treatment Plant is back up and running and the water levels in the reservoir are rebuilding. The Boil Water Notice will remain in place until we have had 3 consecutive days of acceptable test results.

Dannevirke: Due to the heavy rainfall and power cuts, Dannevirke Wastewater Treatment Plant has been under additional pressure and we are asking residents to reduce their water use in order to minimise the amount of water that needs to be processed by the Plant. Water consumption levels in Dannevirke rose today and we’re reminding residents that it’s important to minimise use now so that we can avoid the need to implement any water restrictions.


As at 4pm on Sunday afternoon, there were 6 households in the Tararua District that were still without power. Power companies continue to work on establishing access to their services so that they can restore power to these households.


Weber School is re-opening tomorrow: No buses will be operating, and if you are dropping your children off you MUST only use open roads. Roads that are closed are only for emergency vehicles. Current status of Tararua roads can be found on the Council website.

Mental Health Support: 1737 is New Zealand’s national mental health & addictions helpline number. Free call or text 1737 any time to talk with a trained counsellor. It’s completely free and available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Rural Support Trust is also available on 0800 787 254.

Welfare support is available: If you have been affected by the cyclone and need support, please contact us on 06 374 4080 or 06 376 0110 and let us know how we can help.

Mayoral Relief Fund is open: Donations will go directly to flood relief for our community. You can make donations at our Customer Service Centres, Libraries or a direct deposit. The details for that are: Tararua District Council 03-0614-0088406-01 . The reference is “Flood Relief”.

EOC Outcomes for 19 Feb