Clean-up continues and more bad weather forecast

Auckland Emergency Management Director John Dragicevich says the clean-up from Tuesday evening’s storm is continuing with council and power crews working around the clock to remove debris and restore power.

“Much of the region is returning to business at usual however we still have a large number of properties without power – and some more bad weather coming.

“Those without power have now had 36 hours without heating, hot water and other essential services, and will be dealing with food spoilage issues.

“We can’t emphasise enough how important it is for people to look out for each other and check on neighbours, friends and family that might not be coping under these circumstances, especially those with young children and the elderly.

“If you don’t have support networks in place, please phone us on 0800 22 22 00.

“Metservice has advised that there’s more wind and rain coming. Please check that items on your property are secure, that includes any trees that may have been damaged in Tuesday’s storm, and make sure you’ve restocked batteries for torches and radios,” he says.

Auckland Metservice meteorologist Georgina Griffiths says tonight’s weather is expected to be very different to the previous storm. A fast-moving front brings a windy and wet night to Auckland, but people living in eastern or central parts of Auckland are unlikely to experience gusts anywhere near as large as previously seen.

“If you live in the eastern half of the region, the forecast gusts tonight are not as large as were predicted for the previous storm. Remember, the ‘bigger the gust number’ the bigger the mess,” she says.

However, for those living out west, especially along the west coast beaches, there remains a good chance of experiencing briefly damaging winds again tonight (8pm-midnight).

“During the last event, damaging winds were widespread and affected most people. This is not the case tonight – we expect severe winds to be rather localised this time around,” says Griffiths.

Vector has advised that 41,000 homes and businesses are still without power and around 500 power outages are affecting the Counties Power area.

Council call volumes, with requests to respond to downed trees or issues relating to the storm, have returned to normal ‘business as usual’ levels. The council has had three crews of arborists out removing felled trees throughout the storm response. Arborists and maintenance teams will continue to work on clean-up over the next few days.

Public transport services have returned to normal, however power outages are affecting lighting at some train stations and some traffic signals. Generator power is in place where possible.

Power outage tips

  • Throw away any frozen food that has been exposed to temperatures above 4°C for two hours or more or that has an unusual odour, colour or texture. When in doubt, throw it out.
  • If food in the freezer is colder than 4°C and has ice crystals on it, you can refreeze it.
  • Contact your GP if you’re concerned about medications having spoiled.
  • Restock your emergency kit with fresh batteries, canned foods and other supplies.
  • Households that require power to pump water from tanks or to operate septic systems may need special assistance.
  • Conserve your hot water.

Regional round-up

 Public transport: power outages are affecting lighting at Ranui, Onehunga, Puhinui and Morningside Stations. The rail and bus network is largely operating to schedule.

Road network: power has been restored to Whangaparaoa dynamic lanes, 32 traffic signal sites and two ramp signals are down due to power or communications failures, generators are in place at key sites.

Local road closures (as at 7am):

  • Hilstan Place, Onehunga
  • Marne Rd and Settlement Rd, Papakura
  • Temple St, Meadowbank
  • Adams Drive, Pukekohe (near Keith Pl)
  • Pilkington Rd, Mt Wellington (between Torino and Tripoli)

 

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