Wastewater network inundated by unprecedented stormwater infiltration

Published on August 21, 2022

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Persistent, heavy rain coupled with high ground water levels, are causing challenges with our networks and isolated flooding for some residents.

Waitārere Beach, Foxton and Foxton Beach residents are asked to urgently stop pumping stormwater into the wastewater network. Wastewater pump stations have been inundated with stormwater inflow, and while Council have recently upgraded the pump stations at Rua Avenue and Forest Road, enabling them to triple their pumping capacity, and made upgrades to wastewater treatment plants, the network is unable to keep up with the additional load.

Horowhenua District Council contractors have been out most of the night and this morning with sucker trucks trying to relieve the pressure on the network, but holding and irrigation ponds in Te Awahou Foxton and Waitārere Beach are at 100% capacity.

As a last resort, Council have advised iwi and Horizons Regional Council, that we’ve had to temporarily partially discharge treated wastewater to the Manawatū River in Te Awahou Foxton.

If the Waitārere Beach network continues to be inundated, untreated effluent from holding ponds will overflow onto the ground and could compromise our pump house, causing irreversible damage and a breach of Council’s resource consent.

Chief Executive Monique Davidson says, “The current situation is unprecedented, with weather conditions putting significant strain on our community, our people and our networks.  We’re grateful to our community for their help and understanding, as our teams work to mitigate the impacts of recent weather events.”

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