Ōwhiro Bay resident hopeful storm will prompt more council support

As waves lap at front doors of Ōwhiro Bay properties, residents are once again calling on the council to further protect them from the threat of rising tides. 

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Resident Ewan James Pohe told 1 NEWS while the council are being more proactive, a sea wall would provide more support. Source: 1 NEWS

“It’s disappointing,” Ewan James Pohe told 1 NEWS. 

“Very disappointing, I mean some people were worried about aesthetics but surely life and limb is more important than aesthetics.” 

When waves thrashed the region’s coastlines last year in lockdown, the first storey of Pohe’s home completely flooded out and had to be rebuilt. 

Now with more warning from council, he’s prepared; equipped with a pump and plywood to prevent damage. 

“This time, as people were aware of what happened last time, we put plywood across some windows and the ranch sliders so damage was minimal.

Ōwhiro Bay residents clean up after last night's storm. Source: 1 NEWS

“Water hit the ply then went back up, we had the pump ready to get it all out again.”

But to prevent waves from reaching his home at all, he’s wanting the council reconsider how it protects its coastal communities. 

Pohe said communication with the council is far better than it used to be, with the authorities being more proactive in their warnings. 

Now he’s hoping that will help lead to a more protective measure for the people of Ōwhiro Bay.

Earlier this year the council finished its work on upgrading the bay's sea wall, tearing down the existing infrastructure and reinforcing the bank behind it. 

However, they told 1 NEWS there's currently no plans for sea walls further along the coast towards Red Rocks. 

"But there is a pilot project being considered for the area, which includes camera monitoring and moving of gravel arond on the beach to reduce overtopping with large swells," a spokesperson said.