Buller District Council

Information and updates

Buller Emergency Management phone number 03 789 7999

General advice and updates following West Coast Floods

Community Hub, NBS Theatre – hours

Open 10am – 2pm Saturday and Sunday, and 9am – 4pm weekdays.

Let’s clean up our town!
Issued 21 July 2021, 15:30

Buller District Council, WestReef Services, SmartEnvironmental Ltd, and the New Zealand Defence Force are teaming up to give our community a helping hand.

Council’s contractors, supported by NZDF staff will be out to pick up household waste from flood damaged houses in Westport and Carter’s Beach.

The transfer station will also be accepting flood related household waste at no charge during this period.


Thursday 22 July to Saturday 24 July, 8am – 4pm

What will be picked up?

  • Household rubbish
  • Furniture/carpets/underlay/curtains etc
  • White Ware
  • Demolition waste from flood-damaged houses

When will your waste be picked up?
Thursday = Pink
Friday = Yellow
Saturday = Blue
The green areas will be cleaned up between Thursday and Saturday.

To give the contractors a hand – please sort your rubbish in piles of types of rubbish and place them on the berm, leaving the road, kerb channels and drains clear, and enough space to use the footpath.

If you need help moving flood-related household waste, please contact the Buller Emergency Operations Centre on 03 789 7999. See our Let s clean up our town flyer for a short summary.

Temporary Accommodation Service (TAS)
Issued 21 July 2021, 15:30

If your household has been affected by flooding on the West Coast of the South Island, and you need support to find temporary accommodation, we can help.
If your household has been affected by the West Coast Flooding and you need support to find temporary accommodation, we can help.
The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) has activated the Temporary Accommodation Service (TAS) to assist displaced people find suitable temporary accommodation.
Whether you need assistance in finding temporary accommodation immediately or think you may need some help in the future, you can register your details via our website www.tas.mbie.govt.nz
If you are not able to complete the form online, you can call 0508 754 163 to discuss your requirements.
If you are currently staying in emergency accommodation or are staying with friends or whānau and think you will need a longer term accommodation solution while your home undergoes repairs following the flooding, you can talk to TAS now about the options available.
After registering, you will be contacted by a temporary accommodation staff member who will assess your needs and work with you to help you find suitable temporary housing.
There will be a cost for temporary accommodation; this is not income or asset tested. If you are uninsured, or your insurance policy doesn’t cover temporary accommodation, you may be eligible for financial assistance. Our coordinators can direct you to agencies providing financial assistance for the event that has damaged your home.
If you are the tenant or landlord of a rental property www.tenancy.govt.nz has information on your rights and obligations after a natural disaster.
Further information
If you need further information, you can:
Phone us on: 0508 754 163
Email us at: temp.accom@mbie.govt.nz

Building Inspections Well Underway in Westport
Issued 21 July 2021 09:50 

Fifteen teams of building inspectors will be working in Westport today, carrying out more detailed inspections of the houses that have been flooded.
The first rapid disaster assessments were carried out by Urban Search and Rescue, the NZ Response Teams and defence force, and provided a snapshot of damage.
Civil Defence Controller Sean Judd says that the building inspectors are now carrying out detailed inspections in Westport and will move to rural areas tomorrow.
In Westport, building inspectors visited 135 houses yesterday with another 385 visits scheduled today. More inspectors have arrived in town to support the Buller District Council’s staff and they are aiming to complete most inspections by tonight.
That will give residents some certainty about whether their home is safe to reoccupy, Mr Judd says.
A Red sticker means you can go inside and clear our carpet and belongings, but you are NOT able to stay in the building. If you’re unable to stay with family and friends, contact the Community Hub at the NBS Theatre, open from 9am – 4pm daily, for temporary accommodation.
A Yellow sticker means you can move back in. Please disinfect anything flood waters may have come into contact with. If you are unable to stay in your home or with friends or family, please get in touch with the Community Hub and we’ll find you temporary accommodation.
Buller Electricity will have disconnected power to flood damaged houses until homeowners can ensure it is safe to electrically re-connect. Homeowners need to contact an electrician to make the necessary checks and obtain a Certificate of Compliance from their electrician. This is at your own cost. Please call BEL on 03 788 9904 with enquiries.
If you are concerned that your house has suffered damage from the flood and you haven’t had a visit from the building inspection team by 5pm tonight, please call 03 788 9111 on Thursday morning.

What yellow and red means for your home
Issued 20 July 2021, 17:25

Lots of people are wondering what the red/yellow classification means for houses.
RED: Unfortunately these houses are not safe to live in. Although it says ACCESS PROHIBITED, you can still enter your house and pull up carpets and collect belongings, but it is not safe to stay for long periods or sleep in your house.
YELLOW: You can still live in your house but it will need a clean up. Some people will not be able to move straight back in because they have a health condition, or are caring for a young baby or an elderly person.
If you need help finding temporary accommodation, come to the community hub at the NBS Theatre 9-4 pm daily or call us on 788 9111.
Please ask for help if you need it.
If your house has no sticker, that means it is GREEN and you can move back in as soon as you like.
It can be a very emotional time going back into flood-affected homes. Please look after yourselves as much as possible.
Your community is behind you and there are many people working to make this easier. As the days pass we will be able to give you more information.
In the meantime, please check our media release for more details and see our flyer What Yellow and Red Means for a quick summary.

Donations to official Buller flood support open now
Issued 20th July 2021, 14:35

The official Buller Mayoral Relief Fund is now open for the public to donate to support communities impacted by the recent flooding.

Buller District Mayor Jamie Cleine says “The people of Buller are faced with a massive clean-up and recovery from this event and we will ensure these funds are used to benefit Buller communities impacted by this devasting flooding.

“We can now accept donations to directly support the people most in need. This will be of great help to the people of Buller.”

The Buller Mayoral Relief Fund bank account number is 03-1354-0583471-00.

“We appreciate the support we have received from government agencies, volunteers, NGOs and the people of the Coast who have all been helping our communities through this very distressing time,” says Jamie Cleine.

The Government contributed $300,000 to the Buller Mayoral Relief Fund on Sunday (18/07) with an additional $200,000 support funding for farming and growers in the Buller and Marlborough districts.

The fund will be administered by the Mayor, a councillor and community representatives through the Buller District Council to meet the needs of affected families and individuals and community organisations.

Form are available for download HERE Mayoral Relief Fund Application Form  and at the Community Hub, at the NBS Theatre, open from 9am – 4pm daily.

We will endeavour to have your application processed and the funds paid into your bank account within three working days to provide you with help as soon as we can.

What support is available and where can you get help fact sheet
Issued 20 July 9:12

Support information – health, $$$, returning home, cleaning up, insurance, schools/early childhood, rural communities, renting, animals, international visitors and other support is available in this fact sheet: AoG Factsheet South Island Weather Event (1)

No recycling collection this week

Issued 19 July 19:22

There will be no recycling collected this week.
Residents are asked to wait for further advice.

Security Patrols of Flood Affected Areas

Issued 19 July 2021 19:18

The New Zealand Defence Force and NZ Police are doing multiple patrols of flood affected areas to ensure the security of properties in Westport.
These patrols are designed to reassure property owners who have had to vacate their premises due to flooding.
We are committed to protecting our community.
Patrols will be active 24 hours a day, if you can see any suspicious activity please call 111 immediately.

Rubbish collection this week
Issued 20 July 2021 08:59

Perishable items (food and scraps) in sealed rubbish bags will be collected from the roadside throughout the week. Residents can call 789 7999 for plain rubbish bags or they can be picked up from the White Star clubrooms in Lyndhurst St. It is not necessary to use the official Buller District Council bags.
Residents are asked not to leave non-perishable items including cardboard, glass, furniture items, whiteware and hazardous goods on the roadside at this stage. Please keep these items inside your property until further notice.
There will be no recycling and glass collection this week. Residents are asked to wait for further advice.
The Westport refuse station will be open from Tuesday to Friday this week from 9am to 4pm.

Rubbish collection this week

Issued 19 July 2021 19:03

Kerbside collection will ONLY pick up perishable items in sealed plastic bags. No other items will be accepted and collected.
Buller District Council and council’s contractors are working on a plan to manage the large amount of solid waste expected.
Please be patient and considerate and keep these items on your property until further notice.
We will provide an update as soon as we can.

Transfer station’s opening hours 19 – 23 July 2021

Issued 19 July 2021 18:50

Transfer station’s opening hours
The Westport transfer station will be open from Tuesday to Friday from 9am to 4pm. The Transfer Station is fully operational.
Due to the large amount of solid waste expected please be patient and considerate since the staff will be very busy.

No bedding needed!
Issued 19 July 2021 18:47

No bedding needed!
We have plenty of mattresses for now. Thanks so much to all the community minded people who have donated mattresses and other bedding items.
We would like to recognise their dedication and commitment in supporting the community.

Roads are open
Issued 19 July 2021 15:34

SH6 Murchison to Inangahua, Upper Buller Gorge, road open.

Contamination in flooded houses
Issued 19 July 2021 14:52

People must use personal protective equipment (PPE) if they handle items that have been in contact with flood water.
Treat all flood water as being contaminated.

Westport rubbish collection
Issued 19 July 2021 14:52

Westport residents are advised that perishable food items can be left on the roadside in sealed plastic bags for collection later today (Monday).
Empty bags can be delivered to residents upon request (phone 789 7999) or picked up from the White Star Clubrooms in Lyndhurst St.
Bags are available until 5pm this evening. Residents do NOT need to use the official Buller District Council rubbish bags for this purpose.
Residents are asked not to leave non-perishable items including glass, packaging materials or hazardous items on the roadside at this stage.
Please keep other waste items on your property ready for collection later this week.
The Transfer station is closed today but will be open from 9am – 4pm tomorrow.

Community Hub established
Issued 19 July 2021 12:37

A one-stop shop for flooding concerns will open this afternoon from 1pm to give residents a place to register their needs and get information. The Buller Community Hub will be based at the NBS Theatre, Westport, from 9am to 4pm daily.
Various agencies will be available to assist resident affected by flooding.
Agencies will include:
  • Buller District Council
  • Homebuilders
  • Age Concern
  • Public Health
  • Red Cross
It is expected Kainga Ora, Ministry of Social Development, Animal Welfare, and other local community agencies will be available later in the week.
If necessary, residents will be taken through a needs assessment to work out what help and information they might require for both the short and long-term.
The Community Hub will have the latest public information on the flooding emergency.
The hub is being coordinated by Maegan Bird from Homebuilders Trust. She says residents are welcome to turn up for a “cuppa and a chat”.

Water and electricity are a bad combination
Issued 19 July 2021 12:37

If your house has water in it, and the power is still on, please leave your house immediately and contact Buller Electricity, as there is a serious risk of electrocution.
If you have had water in your house, there is potential a serious risk of electrical hazard, and you need to get an electrician to check this before using any power.
Flood damaged houses will have power disconnected by Buller Electricity until Homeowners can ensure it is safe to electrically re-connect. Home owners need to contact an electrician to make the necessary checks and obtain a Certificate of Compliance from their electrician.

Primary health care – a pop-up drop-in clinic to open in Westport, Monday – Friday
Issue by West Coast District Health Board 19 July 2021 12:16

A primary care drop in clinic staffed by a GP and nurses will be open this week at the COVAX vaccination clinic at 51 Russell Street, Westport.
*Note they will not be giving COVID-19 vaccinations. All vaccinations have been cancelled this week in Westport.
The clinic opens tomorrow morning, Monday 19 July at 11am – 4.30pm and then from Tuesday until Friday it will be open from 10 until 4.30pm.
Everyone with urgent health care needs is welcome to attend – no appointment necessary.
If you have a respiratory illness and are coming to the clinic, please wear a mask or face covering.
And if it’s an emergency, please call 111 – emergency services are operating.

Fire emergency safety information when returning to flooded buildings
Issued Monday 19 July 2021 12:15

Water and electricity are a bad combination so please be very careful when returning to your flooded house or
business – including sheds and garages. Water on a live plug, wire or appliance can cause an arc that starts a
fire and can also cause electrocution. Ideally have your property checked by an electrician first.
Do not use any household appliances or tools if they have been in floodwater, even if they seem to be dry
now. Get them checked by an electrician before you use them.
If you are using heaters or dehumidifiers to dry out your property, do not plug them in to multiboards. These
appliances use a large amount of power and overloading multiboards can cause a fire.
If you have any chemicals or hazardous substances affected by floodwater, contact Buller District Council
about how to dispose of these safely.
Water can cause doors and door frames to swell or warp. It’s important to check your doors aren’t jammed,
affecting your fire escape route.
If your family has temporary sleeping arrangements while your house is drying or being repaired, check there
are working smoke alarms. Contact the Westport Fire Station on 03 789 7108 if you require assistance or have
any concerns.
Call 111 if you see smoke or fire at any stage

Latest emergency information
Issue Sunday 19 July 12:05

Last night was the third night away from home for many residents – thank you for your ongoing patience.

Assessments are being undertaken on the hundreds of impacted properties and this can only be done in daylight hours – this process is well underway. A further update will be provided as soon as possible today (Monday). We understand this is a distressing time, please look after each other.

Read the latest emergency information here Latest emergency information 19 July 2021, 10.00am

Carters Beach Road is now open!
Issued Sunday 18 July 21:30 

30 km/h speed restrictions are in place due to seal damage.
Please drive slowly and have a safe trip.
To report any issues with the local road network please call Buller District Council on 0800 807 239.

Buller Health remains closed for at least a week
Issued Sunday 18 July 20:41

Buller Health remains closed for at least a week.
Read the West Coast District Health Board updates media release for more information

Health advice following West Coast floods.
Issued Sunday 18 July 20:00 

Read the West Coast District Health Board updates media release for more information:


Loose livestock
Issued Sunday 18 July 18:40

Any loose livestock found please notify the Buller Emergency Operations Centre phone 03 789 7999.
Please advise the Buller Emergency Operations Centre of the location and number of stock when contacting.
If you are able to safely secure the stock in an enclosed area away from other livestock, please do so.

Latest emergency information
Issued Sunday 18 July 17:00

The latest emergency information is available at service stations, supermarkets and dairies, welfare centres, the NBS Theatre and Pulse Energy Centre.
We will endeavour to keep this updated as new information comes in.

No drones!

Issued Sunday 18 July 12:54

No drones are permitted within a 4km radius of Victoria Square in Westport, unless they’re part of the emergency management efforts.  Unpermitted drones are dangerous to response and recovery activities.

Reminder:  No drones are also permitted within 5km of the Westport Airport – Civil Aviation rules.


Issued Saturday 17 July 18:45

Punakaiki Residents are asked to conserve water. The treated water storage tank levels are reducing. We ask all residents to conserve water.
Civil Defence issues a WATER CONSERVATION ORDER for the Punakaiki. Water to be used only for essential uses.
Residents are being asked to conserve water.
The drinking water is fine to consume.

Electricity Network Update

Issued Saturday 17 July 18:25  

Please stay away from water around power distribution boxes.
The power distribution boxes are the ground mounted green and black boxes.
These boxes can hold up to 11000 Volts. Stay away and be save.


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