One lane of the Thames Coast Rd is opening for public convoys this morning after being hit by last week's devastating storm.

The lane will open around 9am, with convoys along the full length of the road.

The convoys would run around every half hour for full public use, but motorists who could take alternative routes were being encouraged to do so.

The Thames Coast Rd has been closed after copping some of the severe weather. Photo / Michael Shepherd-Finch
The Thames Coast Rd has been closed after copping some of the severe weather. Photo / Michael Shepherd-Finch

Escorted convoys would continue between Tararu and Te Puru, where the storm had caused most significant damage to the road.

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The Thames Coromandel District Council asked drivers using the road to allow extra time and be patient. Heavy traffic was expected on the east coast as people headed home from holiday destinations.

The state highway has been closed from Thames to Manaia due to slips, rock falls and dangerous conditions brought about by a monster storm that ripped across the country late last week.

The first big storm of the year had New Zealand in its grip for around two days late last week, with heavy rain and gale-force winds battering the central and lower North Island.

The Wellington and Kapiti regions along with the top of the South Island were also hit by the storm, with the wild weather causing surface flooding and huge waves.

A woman was killed in Rotorua on Friday after a tree fell on the car she was in.

Photos showed Thames Coast Rd with large holes bashed into it. Loose chunks of asphalt were flipped over by the waves.

The council said the road had now become a "very long work site" with around 10km of damaged highway.

Maraetai Coast Rd, in southeast Auckland, has re-opened to one lane.

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East Coast Rd at Orere Pt remains closed north of Kaiaua through to Kawakawa-Orere Rd due to storm-related damage.

Offers of help were flowing in for those affected by flooding caused by the storm, which took out fences, inundated homes and destroyed people's possessions.

A Facebook page for a community's volunteer fire force in the small east coast town of Kaiaua said a community meeting would be held tomorrow evening to gauge the needs of those affected.

The road was undrivable and littered with debris in Whakatete Bay. Photo / Michael Shepherd-Finch
The road was undrivable and littered with debris in Whakatete Bay. Photo / Michael Shepherd-Finch

The town was hit hard by waves of seawater which burst over a low bank. Many people had been unable to return home and businesses such as the town's The Pink Shop remained shut.

Residents had also expressed concerns on the page around health and safety with dust being thrown up from the roads on the coast by passing vehicles.

"If you have stuff you would like to donate please contact us further for more info on drop off points etc," it said.

Meanwhile, the storm was still causing headaches for commuters in Auckland this morning.

The Half Moon Bay ferry terminal was closed and ferries to and from the city cancelled due to damage from Friday's storm.

A full assessment would be carried out today and those affected were encouraged to look at other transport options in the interim.