Wellington Mayor Andy Foster has declared a local state of emergency from 3.30pm today (Tuesday 29 June).

The emergency declaration is to allow for the pre-emptive evacuation of properties in Breaker Bay that are expected to take the brunt of the Southerly swell and storm expected at high tide tonight (around 9pm).

Mayor Foster says advice from the Met Service and NIWA in the past few hours indicates that southerly swells of 6 metres or more could present a significant risk to life and property if they overtop areas alongside the South Coast – as they did in April 2020 and in 2013.

The area of concern that are to be evacuated are:

  • Breaker Bay Road between numbers 53 and 194.

Mayor Foster says he is advised that we need to have residents evacuated from these areas before the situation turns dangerous for residents and emergency services.

Residents are asked to be clear of these areas by no later than 6pm this evening. There will be road blocks at the Wahine Memorial Park and the Pass of Branda – at the northern and southern entrances to Breaker Bay - after that time to prevent people entering the area.

The local state of emergency – declared under the Civil Defence Emergency Management Act – will be lifted as soon as it no longer required.

People who are evacuated are asked to stay with family and friends outside the evacuation zones in the first instance. If people are stuck, they can contact the Wellington City Council on 499-4444.