February 15, 2023
Te Tai Rawhiti prepared as disaster strikes again
A national state of emergency has been signed off by the Minister for Emergency Management, Kieran McAnulty.
The declaration will apply to the regions that have already declared a local State of Emergency: Northland, Auckland, Hauraki-Waikato, Tairāwhiti, Bay of Plenty, Waikato, and Hawkes Bay.
Te Tai Rawhiti MP Meka Whaitiri says state highways 2 and 35 into Gisborne are closed as is the main bridge linking Napier and Hastings.
She says long experience with natural disasters means the rohe was prepared for Cyclone Gabrielle.
“Civil defence centres that are all up the coast already sprung into action prior to the state of emergency, and it’s not a nice thing to be in but because we have so many (emergencies) up there, everyine knows what to do,” Ms Whaitiri says.
It’s only the third time New Zealand history has has a national state of emergency, which will enable the Government to support the affected regions, provide additional resources as they are needed, and help set the priorities across the country for the response.
Minister McAnulty says the National State of Emergency gives the National Controller legal authority to apply resources across the country in support of a national level response.
He says the Government has already been surging support and resources to the regions for some days.