Auckland Civil Defence has defended its response to last night's severe weather saying the "appropriate messaging" was out there and it backed people to use common sense.

Auckland Emergency Management Director John Dragicevich said he was not surprised by the weather and the Auckland region was "coping well".

Thousands woke up without power this morning after 140km/h winds battered the city.

Emergency services received more than 1800 calls related to the storm, while the council's contact centre received about 1000 calls - largely about fallen trees and power outages.


Dragicevich said the message to be ready and be prepared was out there before the storm hit.

"Certainly I heard it all over the radio when I was driving around yesterday..."

In such emergency people should have torches not candles, batteries that work, and cellphones that were charged, he said.

People with hot water cylinders needed to keep showers short, it was "common sense".

"I back our community to know how to apply common sense practices."

Dragicevich said emergency management had warned stakeholders and the public using social media when MetService advised them of the impending weather.

"Like other agencies and members of the public, we rely on MetService and weather forecasters to provide us with weather advice – we are not weather forecasting experts," he said.

"MetService's prediction on this event was accurate."


There would always be "some uncertainty with weather events" but he said Civil Defence had planned and acted appropriately.

However, there would be some "learnings" to be taken from what had happened.

According to Vector, 91,000 properties were still affected by power outages early this afternoon.

Dragicevich said road closures had affected some public transport early this morning, notably trains, but in "most cases this has now returned to business as usual".

The priority had been making sure tree falls were secure, and clean up work would continue, he said.

"We urge people to look out for their neighbour, check in with friends and family and make sure they are coping ok," he said.


"This is a time for us all to work together."