The far Far North dodged the worst of last week's storm, but heavy rain and strong winds did significant damage in southern parts of the district.

The Kaitaia Fire Brigade was called to clear a tree that fell across a road at Awanui, and part of a tree collapsed on to the train in Kaitaia's Jaycee Park, but it was much worse elsewhere.

Around 2000 households around the district were without power on Thursday night, Top Energy spokeswoman Philippa White saying the outages were in small pockets all over the district, which meant repairs were time-consuming, with line crews travelling from fault to fault and removing branches and debris to repair lines, and in some case replace poles.

Kerikeri's Rainbow Falls at the height of the storm on Thursday. Photo / Stephen Western
Kerikeri's Rainbow Falls at the height of the storm on Thursday. Photo / Stephen Western

Far North Civil Defence co-ordinator Alastair Wells said the main issue was downed trees blocking roads and bringing down power lines.


Fire and Emergency responded to about 40 calls across Northland on Thursday night to clear fallen trees, but despite the heavy rain and king tide no significant flooding or road closures had been reported.

The Paihia-Russell passenger ferry made its last crossing to Paihia at 9pm, then diverting to Opua, cancelling plans to continue until 1am Friday to cater for concert-goers in Russell.

Far North District Council spokesman Richard Edmondson said the Hokianga ferry ran as normal on Friday. The council had fielded a number of calls about debris on roads and blocked drains, but was not aware of any major infrastructure damage.

Northland harbourmaster Jim Lyle said a number of boats had broken their moorings and been washed up around the Bay of Islands. They included a houseboat at Jacks Bay, near Russell. Several navigational buoys had also come adrift.

Northland Regional Council staff had removed a number of large logs from the water, but storm damage had not been "too bad."

Meanwhile heavy rain played a part in several road crashes, while the cruise ship Seabourne Encore, which was due to call in at Paihia on Thursday, sailed directly to Auckland.

The Northland Age recorded a total of 59.3mm of rain, more than twice December's total, in Kaitaia. The heaviest fall, according to Northland Regional Council figures, was 78.5mm near Whangaroa Harbour. Kerikeri received 58.5mm, Ohaeawai 55mm and Kaeo 46.5mm.