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Emergency Management staff are currently looking into possible risk of a landslide in the Hipaua Thermal Area above Waihi Village
The village is located north west of Turangi in the general location of a number of quakes felt over the weekend. Two of these were in excess of 4.1 on the richter scale which, while not uncommon, is a risk factor.
There has been some heavy rain and we are expecting more rain so this is an additional risk factor. Emergency Management staff are currently flying over the hill to assess any changes occurring to assess the risk.
There are around 2- 30 residents living in Waihi Village and they will be assessing whether they need to take action. There may be a need to self evacuate, however we are not aware of what those discussions are at this time. We do know that the Kohanga Reo has been closed and children sent home.
Once investigations are complete there will be a meeting of a number of parties including Emergency Management staff, GNS, EW, OPUS, and a representative from the Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management.
At 2pm today (Monday 29 June) there will be a press conference in the Taupo District Council Chambers, 72 Lake Terrace, Taupo. The spokesperson will be the (Southern Emergency Operating Area) SOEA Controller - Shamus Howard.
Hipaua Thermal Area by Waihi Village (north east of Turangi)
Monday, 29 June 2009
Update at 11am
Ÿ There were a number of small earthquakes felt last week there were two during the weekend over 4.1 on the richter scale 10km north west of Turangi. (direct to gns website: www.gns.cri.nz) While this pattern is not unusual it raises the risk level.
Ÿ The hill behind Waihi Village is known as the Hipaua Thermal Area which can be at risk of landslide. There have been a number of slides in the past. (More details to come).
Ÿ We have had a lot of rain and are expecting more – so we need to assess the risk of landslide.
Ÿ Emergency Management staff are currently flying over the thermal area to try and assess if there have been any changes to the area.
Ÿ There are around 20 – 30 residents in Waihi Village. They are currently having discussions about the need to self-evacuate. The Kohanga Reo has been closed and children sent home.
Ÿ There will be a media conference at 2pm here at Council at 2pm. 72 Lake Terrace.
Ÿ The spokesperson is Shamus Howard who is the (Southern Emergency Operating) Area Controller (tbc).