Wet stop­bank warn­ing

South Waikato News - - RURAL DELIVERY -

Ru­ral com­mu­ni­ties are be­ing re­minded to keep graz­ing stock off stop­banks as the rain sets in.

The main pur­pose of stop­banks is to pro­vide es­sen­tial flood pro­tec­tion for thou­sands through­out the re­gion, ac­cord­ing to the Bay of Plenty Re­gional Coun­cil.

While stop­banks could be grazed by cat­tle at some times of the year, es­pe­cially when the ground was firmer in summer, graz­ing should be kept to a min­i­mum in the win­ter months.

Prin­ci­pal works engi­neer Tony Dun­lop said wet­ter soil con­di­tions, com­bined with heavy an­i­mals, could weaken and dam­age the re­gion’s stop­banks.

‘‘Dur­ing win­ter it re­ally is just com­mon sense to keep cat­tle off the stop­banks as much as pos­si­ble to pre­vent the pug­ging and dam­age that they can cause. We ap­pre­ci­ate that most farm­ers and life­style block own­ers know this and take care of our com­mu­nity as­sets.

‘‘Good grass cover on a stop­bank is like a ‘skin’ which helps pro­vide pro­tec­tion to the soil struc­ture un­der­neath. So pug­ging is not just a sur­face prob­lem, it can cause much greater is­sues.

‘‘So it is a timely re­minder that we will be keep­ing an eye on our stop­banks to en­sure that farm­ers are do­ing the right thing.

‘‘There is too much at stake to risk flood dam­age to the prop­er­ties and sur­round­ing com­mu­ni­ties,’’ Dun­lop said.

It was an of­fence to dam­age these as­sets and landown­ers could be held li­able for any dam­age, he said.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.