Riverside spillway gates at Outram may be opened

Published: Tue 20 Nov 2018 04:06 PM
Otago Regional Council (ORC) is due to make a decision whether to open the Riverside spillway gates on the Taieri River at Outram.
This diverts water into a ponding area that is part of the lower Taieri Flood Protection Scheme, and reduces the effects of flooding on properties further down the river at Henley.
The river flow in the Taieri River is expected to peak this afternoon, and a second peak is expected 24-48 hours following that, with levels staying high for potentially up to a week.
The Pomahaka River at the Burkes Ford flow site is approaching its third flood warning level of 4.3m, and flooding of paddocks adjacent to the Pomahaka River is likely. The Henley area is currently experiencing some flooding.
ORC Director of Science, Hazards and Engineering, Dr Gavin Palmer, said river levels continue to be monitored around Otago.
“At the moment there is no spill from Silver Stream, which is positive. We’ll keep an eye on this because even though it’s dropped, it’s sensitive to rainfall.
“We’re also monitoring the Mill Creek pump station, which came under pressure during the July 2017 floods and have brought in extra materials to stabilise it if needed, although we don’t anticipate any issues,” Dr Palmer said.
“The flow expected at Outram is less than the July 2017 floods, and the flood protection scheme is operating as expected,” he said.
Dunedin rivers are also being monitored as rain is localised around the city and coast, especially the Water of Leith near Leith Street Central, and Lindsay Creek at North Road.
In other areas of Otago, Loganburn Dam in the Maniototo is spilling over and ORC is monitoring flows from Paerau and Waipiata.
ORC staff will work during the night again tonight to keep an eye on river levels in Lower Clutha, Dunedin, Taieri and North Otago.
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