Flooding repairs exceed $1m
Flooding in the Mackenzie district caused more than $1 million worth of damage this winter.
Council roading manager Suzy Ratihi said the floods, which occurred in early August, and were followed by torrential rain throughout the rest of the month, resulted in damage to bridges, weirs and roads throughout the district.
"It's the biggest flood event of its kind in several decades, certainly the biggest in terms of costs," she said.
Ms Ratihi said although costs were still being worked out, the estimated total repair bill would be about $1.2 million.
"We've lodged an application with the New Zealand Transport Authority for emergency funding. They've agreed to fund about 82 per cent of the costs if the bill is about $1 million," she said.
"It's very much a moving target; it wasn't just the early flooding that caused damage, the ongoing rain throughout the month of August also made things difficult."
Ms Ratihi said more than $420,000 would need to be spent just on getting the roading network back up to its previous standard - let alone the cost of additional repairs.
"In Albury, we had just completed most of the maintenance metalling required to get it up to standard. That will have to be done over again," she said
Meanwhile, the provisional costs to repair the Raincliff bridge looked to be in excess of $100,000.
"There's also about 500 culverts that needed remedial work, mostly near Albury and Mackenzie pass, and at least six bridges had their approaches washed or [incurred] structural damage as a result of the floods. It all adds up," she said.
During one 36-hour period in early August, the Mackenzie district recorded 220mm of rain - comparable with the floods in 1986 and 1994, and considered to be a one-in-100-year event. The district recorded more than 450mm of rain for the whole month.
Ms Ratihi said the snowfall during the past couple of months was about the expected rate, and would not be factored into the funding request to NZTA.
Should it be successful, the council hoped to complete all the required work by the end of the current financial year.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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