Landslide at Mangapoike stabilized

Press Release – Gisborne District Council

Landslide at Mangapoike stabilized

Strategic management of a landslide at Mangapoike has stabilized the area and Paparatu Road has reopened.

Last month explosives were detonated to cut a two-metre deep trench to release water from a dam formed by the landslide on the Mangapoike River.

The lake was 40 metres deep and rising by 60cm a day.

The trench has since been enlarged to improve the water flow and further reduce lake water levels, eliminating risks to the nearby bridge and farmland.

Mangapoike Station owner Dan Jex-Blake said it had been a stressful few weeks since the slip.

“Now we know we won’t lose access to our farms. We do not know the final outcome but we can see the positives.

“We are hopeful we can have a permanent lake at the end of this that will provide a habitat for rare and endangered wild life. It’s been amazing to see how fast rare species such as dabchicks have adapted to life on the new lake.”

Council’s principle scientist Murry Cave said while it was too soon to predict the end-result, indications are that the lake will remain at a safe level and no longer pose a risk to Mangapoike and Paparatu Stations.

Council staff have been working with Hawke’s Bay Regional Council, Wairoa District Council and scientists from Auckland University throughout the response to the landslide.

Council will continue to monitor the situation over the next few weeks until the long-term stability of the dam is established.

The lake built up behind the landslide dam now occupies approximately 33 hectares. It is inaccessible to the public.

ENDS

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