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Tsunami Warning Signs
29 Jan 2021

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Did you know that there are no tsunami sirens in Kaikōura?
In the event of a long or strong earthquake, the quake itself may be the only warning of a tsunami. Do not wait for further instructions, notifications or advice, evacuate immediately after the shaking has stopped. 

In the Kaikōura District, the risk of tsunami rates as three out of our top 5 dangers! These could be tsunamis from a local, regional or distant source. The other two risks are an earthquake on the alpine fault or a local shake. 

Remember - Long or strong, get gone!

Council are preparing to install a number of signs and road markings to educate and remind us where to go and how high (above sea level) we need to be in the event that a tsunami might occur. This is especially important for our new residents and tourists and visitors who are staying in an unfamiliar location where there is a risk of tsunami - should a long and strong earthquake occur.

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It's Easy to Get Ready
13 Jan 2021

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Are you ready yet? Preparing for an emergency shouldn’t be expensive or complicated. Follow these three simple steps to be prepared not scared.

  • Make a plan - talk to your family and your neighbours about what you will do in the event of an emergency and practise your plan so you know it will work. Sign up to Kaikōura Gets Ready so council can send you all the information you need to know in an emergency.
  • Know your tsunami risk - living in our beautiful coastal township means some of us are at risk of tsumani. While the likelihood of a tsunami happening is low, you need to be prepared. To check if you are in the tsunami zone view the Kaikōura's tsunami zone map. Learn the safest and fastest route to high ground and remember if it’s "LONG or STRONG GET GONE". There is no tsunami siren in Kaikōura. Learn more about proposed tsunami signage and walking evacuation routes in Kaikōura here.
  • Have an emergency kit - the radio is your best source of information, make sure you have a radio at your house with new batteries. Find a complete list of local radio frequencies here. Make sure you have a fully stocked first aid kit plus food and water stored in case of an emergency.
  • Sign up to Gets Ready - a well-connected community helps to improve the safety, resilience and well-being of all residents.


16 February 2021

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Drinking Water Notices
11 Dec 2020

Boil Water

Current Boil Water Notices: Fernleigh and East Coast 

Residents using these water supplies should boil all water used for drinking and cooking for at least 1 minute before use. This includes water for:

  • Drinking
  • Cooking
  • Making Ice
  • Brushing Teeth
  • Washing Dishes

Information about how and when to boil water and what to do if you feel unwell. 


Please ensure friends or relatives living in these areas know to boil their water.

Living with Boil Water Notices can be frustrating. Council is currently working with Community and Public Health to identify how these supplies can be upgraded and improved to meet national Drinking Water Standards and have the notices removed.  Updates will be provided as soon as possible.

More information about each boil water notice can be found below.


East Coast: 

A boil water notice is in place due to inadequate protection and treatment.

The notice was in place before the November 2016 earthquake. Post-earthquake investigations highlighted the limited protection measures.  The notice will remain in place for the foreseeable future until decisions about the future of the scheme are made and any necessary works carried out.

The East Coast scheme is a very large rural supply used predominately for stock. Due to it's size, it would not be practical or efficient to treat the entire scheme. Discussions with the scheme committee and Canterbury DHB  are underway to look at future options including the potential to classify the scheme as a Rural Agricultural Supply.

Once decisions are made, improvement works are undertaken and consecutive complying test results are received the notice will be lifted by agreement with Canterbury DHB.


A boil water notice is in place due to inadequate protection and treatment.

The scheme is managed and operated by Downer. The Fernleigh Water Management Committee (FWMC) is responsible for the maintenance of the water scheme. Council’s role is to monitor water quality through regular testing.

Once the FWMC has decided on the appropriate upgrade options and improvement works are undertaken and consecutive complying test results are received, the notice will be lifted by agreement with Canterbury DHB.


More information

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UPDATE - Development and Use of Former Swimming Pool Site
3 Nov 2020

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Expressions of interest were invited for development and use of the old community swimming pool site and an adjacent area on the Esplanade in Kaikōura, these had be provided to Council at PO Box 6, Kaikōura by 19 October 2020.

The prominent and special site has a total area of approximately 1800 square metres and is classified as Recreation Reserve, requiring it to be used for purposes such as recreation, sporting activities and the physical welfare and enjoyment of the public. The site can potentially be leased subject to compliance with conditions set out in the Reserves Act 1977, and as such could be used for commercial recreational purposes.

Expression of interest were sought from parties who themselves have a plan to deliver their proposal without significant assistance from Council. Proposals needed to be presented with information to address a range of evaluation criteria, details of which could be obtained from Council on request. Council were seeking proposals that are soundly based, with adequate consideration having been given to the associated business case, to ensure that financial burdens do not fall on the community.


At its meeting of 28 October 2020 Kaikoura District Council, in response to a previously submitted initial Expression of Interest for developing the site,  invited Joseph and Associates to submit a more detailed proposal for the development of a commercial hot pool / spa facility on the former swimming pool site on the Esplanade, and also invited public feedback on this or other potential uses of the site.
It is however stressed that Council has at present only received a preliminary proposal for the development of a hot pool / spa facility, with little accompanying detail, and that there is not any commitment on its part to such a development.
Initial feedback should be directed to and should be provided by 18 November 2020. Should this proposal proceed further, additional consultation would be undertaken in the future.

3 November 2020

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Water Conservation
23 Sep 2020

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Save time, water and money and have a healthier lawn.
Set your mower up a notch from now on and over summer.
Be smart about watering your grass and gardens.

Water use

Over winter, drinking water use in Kaikoura township and Ocean Ridge is about two and a half million litres a day.  Last summer the total water use got up to a total of just under 7 million litres a day.  About half a million litres a day of the increase was for summer visitors.  Of the other 4 million litres a day, over half would have been for irrigating lawns and other grassed areas, with the rest for watering gardens. 

Water cost

Council’s water charge rate is $1 per thousand litres. At that rate, the cost of watering lawns and other grass was over $2,000 a day, or $20,000 a month.   

Healthy grass

If grass is cut too short in spring and summer, the roots stay shallow and the grass doesn’t shade the soil. It is easier for weeds to get in and take hold. If you set your mower higher, so the blades of grass are at least 70 mm long, the grass roots will also grow longer and will get down into the moisture deeper in the soil.  It will stay green for longer with less water and you’ll need to cut it less often, saving you time and money. It will eventually go dormant and brown off naturally, coming back green in autumn.  If you really want it to be green in summer, you should only need to water it when it doesn’t spring back after you walk on it, but your footprints stay visible for a few minutes.

Garden watering

Water your plants really well every few days, in the evening or very early morning. Watering every day wastes water and your time. Use a soft spray, to allow water to soak down to the roots where it benefits the plants and doesn’t just run off or evaporate from the surface.


23 September 2020

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Where can you walk your dog?
9 Sep 2020

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Kaikōura is home to a variety of native wildlife and as dog owners we need to make sure we are keeping our wildlife safe from dogs. There has been a number of dog attacks on our native birdlife including a fatal attack on an endangered white-flippered penguin. These unfortunate attacks occurred in an area where dogs are prohibited and could have been avoided. There are a number of areas within Kaikōura where dogs are prohibited and/or must be on a leash at all times. Download a copy of the dog control areas here

Dog park

Kaikōura does not have a dog park and while there are currently no plans to build one, Council are interested in hearing from those within the community that think this is a good idea. Please let our animal control team know your thoughts regarding a dog park by calling 027 668 8780.

Responsible dog ownership is especially important in a setting such as Kaikōura where there are so many chances for dogs to come in contact with our precious wildlife. Please consider this next time you take your dog on an adventure.

Areas where dogs are prohibited 

  • Takahanga Domain
  • Gooches Beach Recreation Reserve within 10 metres of play equipment
  • Recreation Reserve (next to 103 South Bay Parade) within 10 metres of play equipment
  • Bayview Street Park within 10 metres of the play equipment
  • Churchill Street Park within 10 metres of the play equipment
  • Point Kean Seal Colony area and car park and the Peninsula Walkway
  • Jimmy Armers Beach and Recreation Reserve from 1 November to 31 March each year
  • South Bay Domain, fenced off sports areas only
  • Wildlife reserve adjacent to Lyell Creek (Ludstone Road corner)
  • South Bay commercial boat park, Moa Point and the small craft marine facility area
  • Garden of Memories
  • Reservoir Site Scarborough Street (the Lookout)
  • Kaikoura Cemetery
  • Gilling’s Lane/Beach Road Recreation Reserve within 10 metres of play equipment
  • Reserve at South Bay Entrance

Areas where dogs must be on a leash

  • West End (between State Highway 1 and Esplanade)
  • Lydia Washington Walkway (West End to Deal Street)
  • Annie Boyd Walkway (Torquay Street to Killarney Street)
  • Takahanga Terrace to Killarney Street Walkway
  • Dempsey’s Track (Torquay Street to Scarborough)
  • Tom’s Track (Torquay Street to Scarborough Street)
  • Track from Torquay Street to Scarborough Street via Nga Niho Pa
  • Churchill Street (West End to Scarborough Street)
  • Beach Road (Mill Road to Ludstone Road/ Churchill Street intersection)

09 September 2020

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Whale Trail Funding Announced - Picton to Kaikōura Cycleway
24 Jul 2020

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On Friday 24 July in Blenheim, Regional Economic Development under-secretary Fletcher Tabuteau announced that $18 Million had been allocated from the Provincial Growth Fund for the construction of the Whale Trail. 

At approximately 200km, the cycle trail (known as the ‘Whale Trail’) will connect the communities of Picton, Blenheim, Seddon, Ward, Kekerengu, Clarence and Kaikōura. This includes 30km that are currently part of NZTA and KiwiRail works to improve safety, access and amenities along State Highway 1. The 32km Picton to Blenheim stretch will be the first stage completed.

The Whale Trail has been in the planning stage since the 2016 Kaikōura earthquake. Its name is a nod to the importance of whales to the area. It also mirrors the whales’ migratory path, which the trail will follow down the East Coast of the South Island.

The trail will be accessible for a diverse range of ages and abilities, including families, and also surfaces which will include sealed path, road, boardwalk and gravel. It will work to the NZCT grades 1,2 and 3. 

A 200-kilometre cycle trail and walkway from Picton to Kaikōura is expected to deliver thousands of international tourists to Marlborough’s east coast when the three-year build is finished. The project was expected to create 42 full time jobs over three years of construction, with around 130 indirect jobs created each year through increased tourism in the area.

Coastal Pacific Trail Timeline

  • November 2016 7.8 Magnitude earthquake destroys much of the road and rail corridor between Blenheim and Kaikōura
  • Jan 2017 Coastal Pacific Cycle Trail idea is first floated and gains political support
  • Mar 2017 Christchurch, Wellington, Marlborough, Kaikōura and Hurunui Mayors back the project  
  • Jun 2017 Coastal Pacific Trail working group calls asks for feedback on where the route should go and what attractions it should highlight on the way from the Marlborough Sounds to Christchurch. Communities are invited to showcase their stories, history and beautiful spots normally hidden to travellers.
  • July 2017 -  then-Transport Minister Simon Bridges announces funding for an 11-kilometre cycle and walkway from Okiwi Bay to Mangamaunu as part of NZTA and KiwiRails ongoing earthquake recovery work.
  • Aug 2017  KiwiRail confirms it will look at stopping areas and bike carrying capcity in support of the trail.
  • Oct 2017  Rata foundation announces $600k of funding He said the funds would allow them to appoint key people. They were looking to start with a project manager with expertise in construction, and a executive officer to co-ordinate construction, promotions and marketing. 
  • November 2017 Marlborough Kaikōura Trail Trust formed  - nine trustees  sign a trust deed
  • June 2019  Government announcement of $322,000 of funding from Provincial Growth Fund, to enable a technical study to be completed. 
  • July 2020 Government announcement of $18 Million of funding from the Provincial Growth Fund to construct the trail.

Fit with the NZTA/KiwiRail (NCTIR) work along SH1

Since the November 2016 earthquake the NZTA and KiwiRail alliance known as the North Canterbury Transport Infrastructure Recovery (NCTIR) project have been rebuilding the damaged sections of State Highway One and the rail corridor.

This includes work to improve safety, access and amenities over a 60-kilometre section of State Highway 1 between Clarence and Oaro. Part of this work is a shared use path on a 20km stretch of road between Waipapa Bay and Mangamaunu. The intention is to eventually extend this shared path a further 10km south of Kaikōura.

This 30km section will eventually form part of the Coastal Pacific trail.

The final consents for this work were under special legislation that modified the normal process in the Resource Management Act 1991, called the Hurunui/Kaikōura Earthquakes Recovery (Coastal Route and Other Matters) Order 2016. Under this legislation Council had to grant the consent.

A number of residents and visitors have raised concerns about the impact of these planned works on marine access, culturally significant sites and the surfbreak at Mangamaunu. Council staff continue to help connect community members with NZTA and KiwiRail. In August 2018, NCTIR formed a Cultural Advisory Group as a pathway for discussing and finding a way forward for cultural concerns connected with the NCTIR project.

NZTA regional relationships director Jim Harland said there was "no plan to build on [or] adjacent to the urupā" and that it was hoped access to the mahinga kai, or food-gathering place, and the foreshore would be maintained.

Council recognises the value of the coastal strip to all of its users and guardians and the significance of cultural and archaeological matters.

Background and useful links: 


24 July 2020

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COVID-19 Useful Links
24 May 2020

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Quick links to provide you with the most up to date information on COVID-19 in New Zealand.

 Useful Links for COVID-19

COVID-19 Council Services and Community Updates

COVID-19 Kaikōura Health Updates



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Flush Your Water Drinking Taps
13 Dec 2019

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Some plumbing fittings within our homes have the potential to allow minute traces of metals to accumulate in water standing in the fittings for several hours.

Although the health risk is small, the Ministry of Health recommends that you flush a mug full of water from your drinking water tap each morning before use to remove any metals that may have dissolved from the plumbing fittings.

Rather than waste it, this mug of water is perfectly safe to use to water your plants each day.

13 December 2019 

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