A large youth camp in Canterbury has been cancelled due to the weather.
About 1000 young campers and volunteers are evacuating the annual Easter Camp at Spencer Park.
Organisers postponed the charitable trust-run Christian camp yesterday due to the deteriorating weather, but youth groups from around the South Island had already arrived. Some people stayed on site for the night in tents, while others dossed down in local churches, camp director Adrian Palmer said.
The decision to cancel the event came after a site assessment this morning. Some cars had to be towed out due to the mud.
"It's just wet and cold," Palmer said. "The road is deep in water, everything has turned into a big swamp, the big tent has been flooded in. Water is just flooding everywhere".
About 4,500 campers were registered for the weekend-long event.
"With only a quarter of the camp on site and most of them cold and miserable already, the thought of then others turning up and having nowhere warm and dry to sleep . . . the last thing we want is several hundred kids getting hypothermia," Palmer said.
"There was a lot at stake to pull the plug, so we didn't make that decision lightly," he said.
FLOODING CLOSES ROADS
Motorists can expect delays around Christchurch today as several roads have been closed or flooded due to this morning's heavy rain.
Christchurch City Council contractors are working throughout the city to clear grates while temporary traffic management has closed several roads, mostly around Flockton and Aylesford St.
The Heathcote River flooded overnight, affecting several nearby roads, and Avon River and Styx River levels are running high.
State Highway 75 to Akaroa has also closed, while delays can be expected around the Lyttelton tunnel, which has reduced to one lane.
The below roads are shut until further notice:
- Flockton St - Warrington to Archer
- Aylesford St - Westminster St to Hills Rd
- Carrick St - Flockton to Aylesford
- Thornton St - Flockton to Aylesford
- Harrison St - Flockton to Aylesford
- Speight St - Flockton to Aylesford
- Archer St - Flockton to Aylesford
- Edward Ave - Woodville to Barbados
- Francis Ave - Warrington to Westminster
- River Rd - Banks to Medway
- Old Waimak Bridge - detour in place around State Highway
- Hills Rd - Warrington to Edgeware
- Canterbury St
- State Highway 75 Little River - Akaroa now closed
- Lyttelton Road Tunnel reduced to one lane
- Stedley Pl flooded
For up-to-date traffic information throughout Christchurch and Banks Peninsula, visit transportforchristchurch.govt.nz.
- Fairfax Media