Dealing with floods
Information and resources to help you deal with floods.
Preparing for floods
A flood can have devastating effects on a farm business, affecting livestock, land, and buildings. The best way to minimise damage is to be prepared.
- Plan what to do with your pets, livestock and valuable equipment.
- Know where the closest high ground is and how to get there.
- Check your insurance policy.
During and after a flood
- Don't put yourself at risk from contaminated water, damaged roads, or landslides and other hazards.
- Look for and report broken power lines to your electricity provider. Treat all lines as live.
- Trees may be unstable due to saturated ground and high winds.
- Be conscious of security. Lock your car and house. Report suspicious activity to police.
Health and wellbeing
- Throw away food and water that has been contaminated by floodwater.
- Avoid drinking or preparing food with tap water until you are certain it is not contaminated.
- For disposal of hazardous waste, including farm chemicals, call EnviroWaste on 0800 00 06 11.
- Report flooded homes and any need for temporary accommodation to your local council.
- Assess damage to water supply and reticulation systems. Which stock water troughs are contaminated with silt and will need cleaning?
- Assess damage to access lanes, tracks, gateways, culverts, and fences. What flood debris needs to be cleared?
- Assess damage to pastures and the depth and type of silt.
- Assess available non-flooded pastures and other unaffected feed reserves.
- Accept help when offered, and ask for it if you need it.
Update your NAIT records if you moved stock
- If you had to move stock during flooding update your NAIT (National Animal Identification and Tracing scheme) records. Ensuring animal records are up-to-date is vital to ensure that NAIT can provide biosecurity and disease management support.
- If you need help with your NAIT account or updating your records call 0800 48 24 63.
- Talk to your accountant, bank manager, or Work and Income. There are options for help.
- Talk to Inland Revenue about tax relief.
- If you and your family are affected by flooding, you may be able to get a Civil Defence payment.
- The Rural Women NZ Adverse Events and Relief Fund may be able to help.
- Lodge your claim as soon as you can, even though you may not have all the information.
- Take notes and photos of all damage.
- Talk with your insurer during the call about temporary accommodation support, if needed.
- Carry out emergency repairs, such as making buildings safe and weatherproof. Take photos of any damage you’re repairing to add to your insurance claim.
- Call your insurer before carrying out non-essential repairs.
- If you need to throw out some items, such as perished food, take photos first.
Take good care of yourself. Recovering from a flood is a big job. Learn how to recognise and care for anxiety, stress, and fatigue. Call your local rural support trust if you are concerned about someone's stress levels or mental wellbeing.