A flood protection company, Supply Force, has been fielding calls from homeowners and businesses concerned about flood damage. With repeated warnings to be prepared for further flooding, many people are left scrambling, unsure of what to do.
Managing Director Duncan McNeil says “When nature is at our mercy, we can feel powerless. Yet there is a practical solution to help protect your property – floodgates. In the past, people have used sandbags to contain floodwaters. The problem with sandbags is that they are heavy, expensive, time-consuming to build, and not very effective. You can only use them once, and you have to pay to dispose of them”.
In contrast, he says “flood gates can be installed in minutes by one person, meaning you’re almost guaranteed to be able to get it set up before flooding starts. Pretty much any adult can set up a flood barrier – it’s great for people who don’t have the ability to lift heavy sandbags”.
They are made from non-permeable material and pressure fitted. You simply place the gate in the doorway and inflate the seal to create a watertight barrier. Seals can be easily replaced, so you can use your gate over and over again. They are quick to set-up and pack away and they store easily in a small place.
Central Auckland experienced its wettest month on record in January – breaking a 1869 record. With 539 mm of rain, the torrent shattered Auckland’s previous record for the wettest day which recorded 420mm. The destruction was severe too, with over 200 homes red-stickered and 1000 yellow-stickered. Roads have been closed, homes destroyed, and, most devastating of all, four lives have been lost due to the atmospheric river. But is this really a once in 200 year event? Do we have to prepare for it to happen again? Check out this article written by Marc Daalder, he summarises the Auckland flooding in five charts. He explains how temperature affects extreme weather events: “ the atmosphere holds 7 percent more water for every degree it warms. We’re at 1.1C of warming already” says Daalder.
In a chart provided by NIWA, you can see how Auckland’s annual average air temperature has risen from 14.9C in 1963 to 16.9C in 2022. Floodgates may well become an essential part of our lives in the near future, as they provide fast and easy protection.