The Waikato region has 20 large rivers and about 1400 small river systems, so flooding can be an issue in some areas. Flooding commonly happens when rivers and streams cannot cope with heavy rainfall.
Find out if you live in a flood prone area
- Get a land information memorandum (LIM) for your property from your district or city council. Any known hazards that may affect a property will be on a LIM report.
- Check out our maps to find out where the river flood hazard zones are. See waikatoregion.govt.nz/broadscalefloodinfo.
- Check your regional council rates bill to see if you are paying for flood protection and/or land drainage. If you are, there is a reason for that.
- Request a flood hazard information report. (Note: At the end of June we will be launching our Hazards Portal, an online tool which will include all the flood hazard information we have for all properties in the Waikato region.)
Before a flood (if you are in a flood prone area)
- Keep assets and other structures away from flood prone areas. This may already be restricted by planning permission but if not you may save yourself future insurance difficulties and damage to your property.
- Identify your closest high points for emergency evacuation, for people and animals, including pets and livestock.
- Plant vegetation in areas where rainwater may run off to stabilise the ground and help absorb water. If you’re a landowner with a stream on your property and need help with or advice on debris removal, erosion protection and planting, please speak to one of our river management officers. Call 0800 800 401.
- Sign up to our flood warning service if you live in an area that could potentially be affected by floods. The council electronically monitors a number of its rivers to track water levels. When they reach a nominated level, an SMS or email alert is sent to anyone in the area who has signed up for alerts.
During a flood/if flood is imminent
- Keep up to date with weather events as they unfold on Flood Room Live. Flood Room Live gives information on weather, rainfall, river levels, road closures, emergency contacts and Civil Defence.
- Listen to the radio for latest information.
- Wear long pants, a long-sleeved shirt, and sturdy shoes. The most common injury following a disaster is cut feet.
- Move valuable household possessions to upper floors or safe ground if time permits, and fill bathtubs, sinks, and jugs with clean water in case water becomes contaminated.
- Move livestock to higher ground and prevent animals from accessing pooled water where there is a risk of contamination from effluent or chemicals.
- If Civil Defence says to evacuate, do so immediately. Leave early enough to avoid being marooned by flooded roads.
- Never try to walk, swim, or drive through swift water. Many flood fatalities are caused by people attempting to drive through water, or people playing in high water. If it is moving swiftly, even water 15 centimetres deep can sweep you off your feet. As little as 30cm may cause you to lose control of your vehicle.
Find out if you are in a flood prone area.
The regional council monitors the levels of streams and rivers.
"Keep assets and other structures away from flood prone areas."
Planting vegetation in areas where rainwater may run off will help stabilise the ground and help absorb water, minimising flooding.