Have flood lessons been learnt?
Many areas fared worse in the May 5 flood than they did on May 14, 2015, when Porirua was hit by an astonishing deluge.
Shailesh Patel said his Titahi Bay store suffered more this time and blamed roadworks in Dimock St.
‘‘They covered the drains to stop mud getting in there,’’ he said. ‘‘The water had nowhere to go.’’
Patel said road workers had placed mesh over the drain grates, preventing the flood water from draining properly.
He said the drains were functioning for the 2015 flood, but this time the road turned into a river and raced through his shop.
Thousands of dollars worth of stock was destroyed.
Liz Kelly, chief executive of the Whanau Centre in Cannons Creek, said her staff were ready when the heavens opened this time.
‘‘We knew what was happening because of last year,’’ she said.
‘‘We turned tables upside down to divert the water into the drains and away from the building.’’
Kelly said she was concerned the footpaths outside her building were contributing to the flooding problem.
‘‘The council beautified the Cannons Creek shopping area by paving the footpath, but the footpath has become a dam.
‘‘Surface water isn’t running into drains, it’s coming into our building.’’
She said the council had not rectified the problem after last May’s flooding.
‘‘I know they can’t control the rain, but when things aren’t fixed the problem is exacerbated.’’
Alex van Paassen, from Wellington Water, said the rain that fell on May 5 was anything but a reasonable amount that drains could cope with.
‘‘To build infrastructure to cope with storms of that intensity would cost billions of dollars,’’ he said.
‘‘The level of infrastructure required to cope with 1-in-100year-type events would come back to ratepayers.’’
Van Paassen said although the sight of heavily flooded roads could be alarming, it was what was meant to happen. ‘‘Roads become secondary flow paths to carry water away from homes.’’
Dimock St, Titahi Bay, was hit hard by the May 5 flood.