A major clean-up will begin today on the East Coast where heavy rain flooded homes, a school and washed away roads.
Flooding caused extensive damage in Tokomaru Bay where homes were flooded and flooding at Hatea-a-Rangi School forced it to close after being almost completely destroyed.
Numerous roads were washed away including a bridge in Waipiro Bay.
RNZ reporter Māni Dunlop was at the scene and told Morning Report there was a mood of resilience on the ground this morning, as people got on with the clean-up. The East Coast is no stranger to floods and dealing with damaging weather events, she added.
Speaking from Arthur St - the most-affected street in Tokomaru Bay - she said the community had breathed a collective sigh of relief after rain forecast to hit overnight hadn't caused any further damage.
River levels had receded after a walking bridge was completely washed away over the weekend.
The more settled weather today was helping those cleaning up debris left behind from the floods.
"Yesterday afternoon when I was driving through past some of the homes that had lost caravans, one had lost a container that had been completely washed away, people were cleaning out their homes," she said.
"Not to the extent that they'd like because they were waiting on insurance assessors.
She said rebuilding streets and roads would be a major undertaking, as communities had been left physically divided.
"People were really getting to grips with what they were having to deal with. People's livelihoods were really impacted on the coast and if you look at the infrastructure as well, driving up further, a lot of the roads have been blocked off by slips, as well as the bridge in Waipiro Bay washed away, which has isolated about five families."
She said another 10 families had also been blocked off and left isolated nearby. Contractors were at the scene working on clearing debris.
"The council and the contractors will be working hard again as they were yesterday ... to get those people their access back so they can go into town and get their supplies that they need."
Hatea-a-Rangi School is facing an uncertain period of closure as the extent of damage is being assessed, Dunlop said.
"When I looked at the school yesterday there was silt everywhere around it. Looking through the windows the classrooms and administration block has been destroyed. At this stage the school won't be reopened...
"Unfortunately, because of waiting for those insurance assessors the clean-up of the school can't get underway today."
Processes had been put in place so pupils could be taught from home in the interim period.
"Based on the communications from the principal and the [board of trustees] chair Lillian Te Hau-Ward, they'll go and return back to their distance learning, which Covid has obviously prepared them for," Dunlop said.