Sophie Ryan

Sophie Ryan is an NZME. News Service reporter.

Winter storm not done yet

Six trees came down in this week's storm at Chris Clarke's place, 15 minutes north of Helensville, and after five hours of chainsawing, he'd only cleared out 3m of space. Photo / Chris Clarke
Six trees came down in this week's storm at Chris Clarke's place, 15 minutes north of Helensville, and after five hours of chainsawing, he'd only cleared out 3m of space. Photo / Chris Clarke

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Tonight will be the third cold night without power for thousands of households as more stormy conditions continue to batter the top of the North Island.

About 6400 Northland customers are still without power, and have been told to prepare for more days off the grid.

Top Energy line crews have been working through the stormy conditions to return power to settlements in the far north, but Civil Defence says more bad weather is likely to hamper efforts.

Watch: Trees blown over in high winds

Video

NorthPower had restored power to all but 1000 customers who were cut off in Whangarei and Kaipara after the storm.

Spokeswoman for Northland Civil Defence Emergency Management (NCDEM) Group Claire Nyberg said the power outages continued to affect sewage systems, telecommunications and drinking water in some areas.

However, there had been no requests for assistance with food or water at this stage.
Ms Nyberg urged people not to travel on roads unless necessary.

"The length and changeable nature of the weather event is making it difficult to accurately capture in real-time exactly which Northland roads and highways are open or affected," she said.

State Highway 1 at Moerewa, State Highway 12 west of Kaikohe and North of Dargaville, and State Highway 11 at Lemons Hill, Kawakawa were all flooded and motorists were warned to take caution.

The Northland District health Board has issues a warning to stay out of waterways, floodwaters and harbours across the entire region to avoid contact with contaminated water.

People who have been without power have also been warned to throw out thawed food rather than re-freezing it.

Watch: Wild weather in Northland

Video

Vector crews have restored power to all but 383 Auckland region customers who were affected by the storm.

Hot water has been cut to some areas after trees and debris damaged lines.

MetService says the heavy rain will continue in Northland until Saturday with a further 100mm to 160mm of rain expected to fall in the Far North and eastern parts of Northland.

The strong winds will remain, with gusts of up to 100km/h forecast in Auckland and Northland until Saturday morning when they will ease, according to MetService.

Watch: Wild weather hits Auckland

Video

Forecast for the main centres

Whangarei: Rain tomorrow, possibly heavy in the evening and gusts of up to 100 km/h in exposed places. Saturday heavy rain and winds turning westerly and easing.

Auckland: Occasional rain tomorrow with gusty northeasterlies. Heavy rain on Saturday and winds turn westerly.

Hamilton: Cloudy with chance of light rain tomorrow. Rain will develop from Saturday morning and the wind will die out.

Tauranga: Drizzly rain will develop by night tomorrow. Fresh northeasterlies. Rain will develop on Saturday.

Wellington: Tomorrow will be fine with high cloud and light winds. Northerly winds on Saturday with some rain developing.

Christchurch: High cloud tomorrow and a chance of rain. Strong northeasterlies will ease on Saturday.

Dunedin: High cloud with a few spot of rain tomorrow. Saturday will become fine with strong northeasterly winds.

- NZ Herald

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