Minister Views Karamea Damage

  • Jack Elder
Civil Defence

The Minister of Civil Defence, Jack Elder, has made a flying visit to the West Coast town of Karamea this afternoon to inspect flood damage in advance of a Cabinet decision on possible financial help for repair work.

Mr Elder, accompanied by the Director of Emergency Management and Civil Defence, John Norton, met the Mayor of the Buller District Council, Pat O'Dea and council officials before inspecting damage to river banks and flood protection stopbanks.

"I went there at the request of the Prime Minister who has expressed considerable concern at the series of blows dealt to the West Coast by natural events and economic developments," Mr Elder said. "I wanted to get a first-hand view of the problems facing the area while the government is finalising what help it may be able to give."

In 25 days last month Karamea was hit by three "20-year" floods which caused cumulative damage to river protection systems.