Man watches rocks fly past as hill slips around his Nelson home

A new stream has appeared at Nelson’s home in Scott Tambisari as the area copes with flooding last week. Photo/Provided.

A Nelson man watched rocks fly past him after a landslide crashed around his Grove St property.

Scott Tambisari and his children, 2 and 4, were evacuated on Thursday night as a “new stream” appeared around his house after days of heavy rain.

Tambisari spent the day cleaning sewers and culverts to keep water flowing and prevent his home from flooding.

“Thank goodness our upstairs neighbor had an excavator that morning. Every time there was a slip, debris would fall and block the culvert. We were shoveling non-stop for most of the day.”

Scott Tambisari was evacuated from his Nelson home due to slips and flooding caused by rain.  Man watches rocks fly past as hill slips around his Nelson home
Scott Tambisari was evacuated from his Nelson home due to slips and flooding caused by rain.

As Tambisari cleared the dirt, he heard “crazy rumbles, huge explosions” and said rocks “flyed over my head”.

“I’m scared, absolutely. When you see rocks rolling down your driveway, you’re like, ‘S***, that’s not good’.”

Wearing raincoats and rubber boots, his children were taken to their grandmother’s home, where Tambisari’s family will live for the next few days.

“They were super brave kids. We did the classic ‘adventure’ for them. We dodged rocks and streams to get to the car.”

Tambisari worked late into the night trying to clear mud and debris from the sewers.

“It was dark and we were lighting torches or something.

“I can’t see anything, the lights are on outside, but all you can see is the water.”

Water pours from Scott Timbisari's Nelson home. Photo/Provided.   Man watches rocks fly past as hill slips around his Nelson home
Water pours from Scott Timbisari’s Nelson home. Photo/Provided.

He started to pack his bags and was about to run away. Rocks covered the driveway and blocked Tambisari’s car.

“I called my mother and asked my aunt to pick us up and take us to my mother’s house.”

“Yeah, so we’re going to camp at Nana’s place for a few nights now.”

He returned Saturday morning, but the hill behind his home remains unstable. Tambisari packed more into his bag and “leave as soon as possible”.

Tambirasi helped clear debris from the culvert at night when heavy rain hit Nelson. Photo/Provided.  Man watches rocks fly past as hill slips around his Nelson home
Tambirasi helped clear debris from the culvert at night when heavy rain hit Nelson. Photo/Provided.

Heavy rains eased on Sunday, allowing Tambi Sarri to assess his possessions.

“We got a call from our next door neighbor saying his house was red. But ours was fine. The basement was flooded and there were inches of dirt around the yard.”

Nelson Tasman Civil Defence said 570 homes were affected by flooding this week. Half of these properties have already been assessed.

Nine had red labels, which meant they were uninhabitable. Eleven have a yellow sticker, which means residents can return when it is safe to do so.

Urban Search and Rescue should assess all properties by 5pm Monday. They will also undergo a geotechnical assessment, which will be completed on Friday.

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