Swimming in Sumner's drain pain

CHARLEY MANN
Last updated 05:00 17/06/2013
Sumner Marriner St flooding
DON SCOTT/Fairfax NZ

SICK OF IT: Marriner St resident Trisha Blik stands in the flood waters. She and her neighbours panic every time the heavens open, awaiting flooding from a blocked stormwater drain.

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Residents in Sumner's Marriner St awoke yesterday to flooded gardens and a road awash with water - for the second time in less than a year.

City Care contractors ran a pump through the night to clear the street of flooding, after householders say the Christchurch City Council failed to unblock a nearby stormwater drain.

The drain should dump excess water into the sea at Cave Rock. Now, because of sand dune growth, the water collects on Marriner St instead.

Similar flooding in August 2012 resulted in insurance claims of more than $2000 for many households, when overflow water containing sewage washed into their garages and gardens.

Homeowners Trisha Blik and Bruce Banbury said the flooding was an ongoing problem.

"It's bloody frustrating. We're under water for the second time in a year," Banbury said.

"Two lawns have gone under and it is beneath one house."

Firefighters helped City Care workers dig channels through the dunes in an attempt to drain the water.

Blik, who has lived at her address for 20 years, said the flooding did not appear to be linked to the earthquakes because the council had sent cameras down the stormwater drain to check for damage.

MetService said the weather was looking ominous for the coming week. Banks Peninsula could have snow on Wednesday and Thursday, coupled with a cold southerly and rain blasting through Christchurch.

The forecast is slightly better today and tomorrow when the weekend's heavy rain will ease to showers.

ECan flood controllers in South Canterbury were on alert last night as the rain intensified.

Surface flooding was starting to appear around the region and the New Zealand Transport Agency had warnings in place for low-lying areas of State Highway 1 south of Timaru.

MetService duty forecaster Andy Down warned streams and rivers were likely to rise rapidly and driving conditions would become hazardous.

People were advised to prepare for surface flooding and farmers were warned to move stock to higher ground.

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- The Press

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