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18 Mar 2018 1:45
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  •   Home > News > National

    Weather traps guests at Ruapehu lodge

    Supplies have been sent in by helicopter for guests cut off in a Ruapehu lodge by the heavy rain that has deluged parts of the North Island.

    Supplies have been flown in for about 120 people in a Ruapehu District lodge, cut off because of the heavy rain that has hit parts of the North Island.

    Slips on the access road and a flooded river have trapped guests at Blue Duck Lodge at Whakahoro.

    Ruapehu emergency management officer Nick Watson says Civil Defence has been in contact with the lodge owners and organised for food to be dropped in by helicopter on Thursday afternoon.

    "They advise that everyone is warm, safe and happy for tonight, with enough supplies for tonight and into tomorrow," he said.

    "We will be watching the weather situation overnight and making a decision on evacuations in the morning."

    In other parts of Ruapehu, State Highway 43 remains closed with multiple slips between Haeo and Tahora on the Forgotten World Highway.

    The heavy rain overnight from Wednesday through to Thursday caused significant flash flooding in Hawke's Bay, with more than 300mm reported in one area.

    However, the situation had eased by Thursday afternoon.

    Hastings District Council says the rain is expected to continue through to Friday morning, but spread over a longer period of time.

    Residents who self-evacuated have been told they can return home, but those in the Esk River catchment area have been asked to remain prepared to leave at short notice if the situation changes.

    The Napier-to-Taupo road, part of SH5, has been reopened after earlier being closed by the weather.

    However, the NZ Transport Agency says people should take extra care and delays can be expected, with some sections down to one lane.

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