Buller District Council

Severe Weather Alert – Cyclone Gita

19th February, 2018


Media Release

19 February 2018

Severe Weather Alert – Cyclone Gita

Cyclone Gita is currently located over the North Tasman Sea and is forecast to affect the West Coast over Monday night, Tuesday and Wednesday. This is a significant storm and is likely to cause road closures and power outages within the region. Residents and tourists should be aware of the potential for severe gale-force winds, dangerous storm surges and waves causing coastal inundation/flooding, heavy rain causing rapidly rising streams and rivers causing flooding.

We strongly encourage all members of our communities to keep up to date with the latest developments regarding this very significant weather system which can be found at http://www.metservice.com/warnings/severe-weather-warnings.


West Coast Emergency Management Group has been liaising with Buller, Grey and Westland district councils and relevant agencies today. Staff will also continue to monitor the situation for any further developments. It is anticipated that the effects of the remains of this weather system will be very significant and may be comparable to the recent Fehi event. It is important the risks posed by this approaching storm are not underestimated.


We strongly recommend that people start to take some preparedness measures for themselves and their property if they have not already done so:


  • Stay informed on weather updates. Listen to your local radio stations; check Facebook pages as civil defence authorities will be updating the most appropriate advice for your community and situation.
  • Put your household emergency plan into action and check your getaway kit in case you have to leave in a hurry.
  • Secure, or move indoors, all items that could get blown about and cause harm in strong winds. Turn trampolines upside down.
  • Close windows, external and internal doors. Pull curtains and drapes over unprotected glass areas to prevent injury from shattered or flying glass.
  • If the wind becomes destructive, stay away from doors and windows and shelter further inside the house.
  • Water supplies can be affected so it is a good idea to store drinking water in containers and fill bathtubs and sinks with water.
  • Don’t walk around outside and avoid driving unless absolutely necessary.
  • Power cuts are possible in severe weather. Unplug small appliances which may be affected by electrical power surges. If power is lost unplug major appliances to reduce the power surge and possible damage when power is restored.
  • Bring pets inside. Move stock to shelter. If you have to evacuate, take your pets with you.

The Mayors of Westland, Grey and Buller District Council’s along with the Chairman of the West Coast Regional Council will meet today at 5.00 pm to review the latest weather predictions and modelling.




Media contact

Mark Crowe | Director | West Coast Emergency Management Group | 03 768 0466



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