Cyclone Gabrielle Update 2

Published 14 Feb 2023

14 February 11am


Tararua District Council activated their Emergency Operations Centre on Monday 13 February. Today at 8.49am on Tuesday 14 February the Tararua District declared a state of emergency to manage the risk to human life resulting from rising rivers and road damage. Currently, several populations have been cut-off on the Coast, including Ākitio and Owahanga. A text message will be sent to mobile devices in area east of the Puketoi mountain range.

At this stage we are expecting the severity of the weather to decrease later in the day, however danger is still imminent with the concern for rising river levels, slips and flooding and the conditions of our roads.

In a civil defence emergency, we are your go-to place for information and updates. We will do our best to update our Facebook page and our website as updates become available.

Please be advised of the following updates:


There is significant risk on our roads with the risks of slips, slumps and washouts, as well as trees falling onto our roads throughout our roading network. We have seen this happen on several of our roads this morning and our teams have been working to clear roads. However, they are getting stuck themselves. Several communities have now been cut off as a result. As our teams work to reconnect these towns, it is becoming increasingly dangerous for them working in the current conditions. We are advising people to please stay off the roads. Do not travel unless absolutely necessary.


Please only put your wheelie bins today if you are desperately needing rubbish collection today. Please ensure your bin clips are secured and bring bins back inside as soon as they have been serviced. Our contractors are doing their best to service our district in the weather.


We are keeping a close eye on river heights across our district. We will continue to update our Facebook page and website as necessary. Up-to-date information on river heights and rainfall is available via Horizons 24-hour, toll-free Waterline 0508 4 FLOOD (0508 435 663) or


Powerlines across our district are taken care of by power co and scan power. If there is imminent danger such as fallen powerlines, please call power co on 0800 769 372 or ScanPower on 0800 80 80 39. Please be aware that due to the conditions of our roads, a lot of areas are hard to get to. At this stage, damages will be assed when areas are accessible, however please still continue to log any damages through the numbers provided.

Fire Service

Please call 111 if life or personal safety is at risk. This includes if there is a fire, if people are trapped by floodwater, slips or fallen trees that are creating immediate danger and people need to be evacuated. If there is no immediate emergency, please keep emergency lines free for those who need them.


For information on State Highways, including Saddle Road, Balance Road and Pahiatua Track, please visit the Waka Kotahi website.

Traffic map (


Please contact your local school or check their website for updates.

You can also stay up to date with announcements via the Ministry of Education’s Facebook page

Kia Kaha Tararua, Stay safe.