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Wild winds brought down a large palm tree at a Whakatane property early this morning, narrowly missing the house.

Sarah Travers returned from a hen's night in Tauranga to find the thick trunk on the palm tree snapped clean in half, and the top of the palm lying across her front lawn.

Ms Travers, 28, said the tree had weathered many rough storms before, but wouldn't withstand the weekend's winds.


"We're quite fortunate because it's not on the driveway, it hasn't hit the deck and it avoided the car."

Ms Travers' flatmate had come back from a night shift and gone to sleep without realising the tree had blocked off their lawn.

Ms Travers said there appeared to also be damage to neighbouring properties in the area.

"I can see other people where they've got tarpaulin outside being ripped and shredded."

She and her flatmates now face the task of figuring out how to remove the tree, which has trapped one of their cars in the corner of the lawn.

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An nzherald.co.nz reader's video of flooding in Kaeo. Courtesy YouTube/mrmaca