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Published: 2002-07-12 00:00:00

Environment Waikato’s Flood Response Team is hoping for a let-up in the rain this weekend as an uncertain forecast keeps them on alert.

Rivers are still high but falling slowly after a small amount of rain overnight in the Waikato and Waipa catchments, while heavy rain fell in the Coromandel, with more expected today.

The MetService has forecast a weather warning for the Coromandel, Gisborne and the East Coast with 50-60mm expected today. For the Waikato Region about 30mm of rain is expected, with slightly less in western areas. There is concern that the low pressure system could stall over the country today and take time to dissipate.

More rain in the east will give some respite to the full Waikato and Waipa rivers, and hydro company Mighty River Power has created some storage space in the system to accommodate more water over the weekend. However areas in the east, still recovering from a civil defence emergency a couple of weeks ago, are concerned at dealing with more water.

Environment Waikato has also briefed its staff civil defence management team on the situation in case they are needed over the next few days.

Several river-based recreational events are planned for the weekend, and Environment Waikato is warning users to be aware that the river is high, with maximum flows in places, and that submerged objects could pose a hazard in safely using the water.

Waikato people are facing yet another wet weekend, after a June rainfall that was 35 percent up on normal and July’s normal rainfall already having fallen by earlier this week.