A Napier couple yet to hear from family in Tonga after the violent undersea volcanic eruption and subsequent tsunami say the uncertainty over whether they have food and water is "nerve-racking".
Vailanu and John Ika are based in Maraenui, and Vailanu's family live on the Tongan island of Vava'u.
The couple work as social youth workers based in Taradale, and have been in the region for the past couple of years.
It's been an anxious 48 hours for the pair waiting to hear from family back in the islands, following the eruption of the Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha'apai undersea volcano, 65km from the Tongan capital, Nuku'alofa.
The eruption caused an ash cloud which soared 20km into the sky, and the sheer power of the blast, and resulting tsunami waves, cut power and communication to Tonga.
Water has been contaminated by ash from the explosion, and the capital is "blanketed" in ash.
"It is nerve-wracking, because at the moment I'm not too sure how badly the island was impacted since there is no connection to Tonga," Vailanu said.
"I don't know how are they are right now, what they need me to help them with.
"Do they have anything to eat or any clean water for them to drink? All those thoughts are in my head."
Her parents and four brothers, with their wives and children, and one sister with her husband and kids all reside in Vava'u.
"My dad is teaching in one of the high schools in Vava'u. If I hear from them anytime soon I will be over the moon if they are okay."
She said the first thing she would do, if she heard from them, would be to see what sort of help she'd be able to provide, with the borders not yet open.
"I might check some of the boats which carry freight to the Pacific Islands and send food, water, cleaning supplies and so on."
With the eruption being so sudden, she was uncertain that her wider family was prepared enough for the enormity of it.
"But I know for sure my dad and my mum are well prepared for stuff like this because every time there's a cyclone in Tonga my mum makes sure we have extra clothes, blankets, torches, candles, matches, food and water."
On Monday, Peter Lund, the New Zealand high commissioner in Tonga, said Tonga's internet was down, after the undersea cable broke following the eruption.
"It's been an awful time, but Nuku'alofa is still standing," Lund said in a social media post.
"Electricity has been restored to many homes, local mobile phones are working but not internationally.
"The big clean-up will be getting underway this week. Volcanic ash has blanketed Nuku'alofa."
A Royal NZ Air Force Orion left for Tonga today to assess the damage and determine exactly what help the island kingdom needs.
It would make an initial assessment of the area and low-lying islands on arrival.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern also committed an initial $500,000, with a New Zealand Navy vessel on standby to provide assistance if required.