Homes swamped by Motueka floodwaters


Homes and businesses near Nelson were swamped by floodwaters from the Motueka.

The rain came in heavy and fast, swamping the Riwaka and Motueka rivers and homes in the path of floodwaters.

Today it was clean-up mode.

One newly renovated Motueka business was flooded out -- neighbours were on hand this morning to help shift stock.

Up the road in Riwaka they were pleading with other residents to slow down, as flooding made waves into neighbouring houses.

Riwaka bore the brunt of the damage with roads, homes and orchards flooded.

The Riwaka River burst its banks in the early hours of this morning, and residents were evacuated not long after but it's the damage to horticulture that will be the on-going issue, with so many orchards around the river completely flooded.

Andrew Drummond is the sixth generation to farm on this land. He woke this morning to find his property totally flooded.

"It's created a lot of stress and issues we don't need but we will salvage what we can and carry on," says Mr Drummond.

Mr Drummond says it's not just the damage to fruit and hops but also damage to his tractors, sheds and other equipment and it's come in the middle of harvesting season -- the worst possible time.

"The devastation through the yard, it's all fixable but the time of the year, all those things just mount up and mount up," says Mr Drummond.

He says he's not seen flooding this bad in the region for over 30 years, but he's not letting it stop him from harvesting -- once he's cleaned up he'll be back to regular work.