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There is a Strong Wind Warning in place for Central Hawke’s Bay and Tararua today.

Metservice is forecasting west to northwest gales up to 130 km/hr or more in exposed areas of the Tararua District and areas of Hawke’s Bay south of Hastings.

Strong, gale force winds, are also expected along State Highway 5 – the Napier-Taupo Road today.

The strongest winds are expected to last until nine tonight, with the Metservice saying the winds could damage trees, powerlines and unsecured structures, as well as making driving hazardous, especially for high-sided vehicles and motorcycles.

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There was a moderate earthquake 5km north-west of Porangahau at 2.03am this morning. The earthquake was a magnitude 4 according to Geo Net and quite shallow at 15km deep

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The Tararua District Council will discuss the option of creating a Maori Ward for the district today.

Council will hold a forum to consider the option of a Maori Ward for the 2022 election.

Council must propose such a Ward by this coming Friday, otherwise will have to wait until the 2025 election.

The agenda for today’s meeting says both of Council’s iwi partners - Rangitāne o Tamaki Nui-a-Rua and Ngāti Kahungunu ki Tāmaki nui-a-Rua have requested the Maori Ward option be implemented.

If Council decides to form a Maori Ward, it will hold a representation review that is subject to public consultation.

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Due to recent poor weather conditions, the New Zealand Transport Agency will close the Saddle Road for two more days this week to complete resurfacing work.

The road will be closed between 9am and 2.30pm tomorrow and Thursday to allow for the work to be completed. 

NZTA asks drivers to allow up to 30 minutes extra time for journey’s, and to be patient on the detour route via the Pahiatua Track.

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The installation of a new culvert on Bush Road at Wallingford will see the road closed today.

The Central Hawke’s Bay District Council says the road will be closed between 8.30am and 3.30pm today, with stop/go traffic management in place tomorrow.