Hundreds of people evacuated their homes and farms Wednesday to escape flooding in southern NewZealand.

Authorities told many residents in the towns of Gore, Mataura and Wyndham to leave immediately as rivers continued to rise after heavy rainfall. Several hundred tourists were being evacuated from Milford Sound after getting stuck earlier this week when flooding and mudslides cut off car access.

Many of the tourists were evacuated by helicopter.

Authorities have declared a state of emergency in the Southland region.

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