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Waitaki MP Jacqui Dean says she wants to congratulate the hundreds of rescue workers and volunteers who battled over the weekend to assist  people around Otago affected by torrential rain and flooding.

“It’s at times like this that our rescue workers really step up and go above and beyond to keep communities safe.

“From police and fire, to roading staff and the Red Cross, the massive multi-agency response, from North Otago to Central Otago was phenomenal.

“It was also heartening to see that our civil defence staff were geared up and ready to handle the crisis, with their well organised and coordinated efforts also keeping people safe.

“The weather came from nowhere and took many of us by surprise. Its ferocity was astounding and the damage that it’s caused will likely impact on the people of this region for weeks to come.

“My heart particularly goes out to farmers, who will now have to deal with wet and water-logged paddocks as they head into the busy calving and lambing seasons.

"Rural Support trusts have kicked into action across Central Otago and the Waitaki and are doing a great job. 

"I would encourage rural communities not affected by the weather to consider donating any extra crop or feed that they might have to support flood impacted farmers and their stock."

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