Storm damage a medium scale adverse event
Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy classified the storm damage around the Franklin Ward as a medium scale adverse event.
Mr Guy was in the Franklin on Wednesday 15 March, visiting areas that were affected by the storm.
“The impact of the Tasman Tempest storm brought heavy rainfall ranging from 350 to 850mm and is estimated to have been a one in 80 year event," he says,
"The damage here is significant and the recovery phase will be a challenge for some badly affected farms,” says Mr Guy.
“Farmers in the Franklin Ward don’t get heavy rainfall as often and say they’ve not seen anything like this since the 1960s. The more hilly areas have a lot of slips, debris and broken fences, and the flatter areas around Clevedon and Whitford suffered from floodwaters and silt."
Between 70 and 80 farmers attended a meeting in Orere. The Minister listened to all the concerns raised by the various farming groups and then announced a support package.
"Extra funding will now be available if required to coordinate support through the Waikato Rural Support Trust who are already on the ground with Federated Farmers assessing needs to help plan recovery activities.
“MPI is also working with the Ministry of Social Development to activate Enhanced Taskforce Green, volunteer workers, and in extreme cases there may also be Rural Assistance Payments (RAPs) available to farmers in severe hardship.”
Mr Guy also surveyed farms in Hauraki District and Thames-Coromandel District where farmers had silt and debris to clean up, and others had lost livestock and supplementary feed where it was stored in paddocks.
Throughout the storm and its aftermath, the Ministry for Primary Industries has been working with local agri-business groups, the Rural Support Trust, Federated Farmers and councils to ascertain the impact of the flooding on the rural communities. Young Farmers have also offered to help in the recovery efforts.
Farmers are urged to contact the Waikato Rural Support Trust on 0800 RURALHELP, their industry body, their accountant, or Work and Income, to talk through their needs.