20 Jan 2016

Clean up after a month's rain in a day

9:01 am on 20 January 2016

Homeowners in Timaru are cleaning up after yesterday's deluge which dumped a month's rain in one day.

Six properties in the South Canterbury city had to be pumped out and two houses protected by sandbags as council contractors and firefighters responded to more than 50 weather-related calls.

MetService said a slow moving rain band was responsible for the heavy rain and more than 50mm was recorded in Timaru. The average rainfall for January is just over 40mm.

The downpour caused flooding to the west and north of the city, including the surburb of Watlington and the Washdyke industrial area.

The flooding made Canada Street impassable, and resident John Begg said the deluge turned his place into what looked like a "lake-front property".

"Storm water stops running down the drains and runs out of them and then once it starts doing that it takes about 10 minutes and the street floods.

"It can come up well over a metre deep in the street."

Mr Begg said the council was slow to close the street and vehicles on the flooded road added to the problems.

"Especially the ones in four wheel drives that try and drive through it and they cause fairly large waves."

There would be a lot of drying out to do today, he said, but at least the weather was clearing.

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