Media Release: Operation Sandbag

Approximately 3000 sandbags have been distributed to residents for flooding protection, if required.

It’s been a sodden winter so far, and the past week of rain has caused some anxiousness for residents who have been impacted by four previous flooding events since September 2021.

While Council has been presented with a long term solution to relieve some of the pressure on the stormwater system in Feilding, we recognise that some residents have more immediate needs to protect their homes.

This past week, Council purchased 5000 sandbags and provided approximately 47 tonne of sand so that residents who have previously been impacted by flooding could fill their own bags and take them home.

Sandbags are most effective for diverting moving water away from buildings and Council provided instructions both digital and in print for those who needed them on how to build sandbag walls.

In total, 3000 bags were filled by our amazing community, comprising of volunteers, effected residents, elected members, and council staff, meaning we still have 2000 empty bags in stock should we need them at another time.

The total approximate cost of the materials used for the sandbagging operation was $2500.

  • The majority of the sand, approximately 26 tonne, was taken from the entrance to Tangimoana Beach, which our contractor Higgins regularly clear on Council’s behalf as part of our normal road maintenance contract. Normally this sand is taken to a quarry, but this time it was diverted to be used for sandbagging.
  • We’d like to thank Tim McColl Contracting for donating sand that was also used for the sandbags.

When averaged out, this provision of sandbags equates to approximately 17c per ratepayer, or 7c per resident of the Manawatū District.

It's the first time that our Council has done anything like this and we’re very happy with the uptake from residents, as well as the community spirit that it generated with many people coming down to assist with filling sandbags for others, and doing deliveries to residents that were otherwise unable to collect their own.