• 50 homes were evacuated after a massive storm hit Auckland, houses have been flooded and cars swept away
• 'I've never seen anything like this': Incredible photos show extent of West Auckland flooding
• West Auckland's Kumeu, Huapai, Ranui, Piha and Henderson Valley appear the worst hit as Civil Defence assess the damage
• Kumeu copped 201mm of rain in 14 hours - the area's second wettest day since records began in 1943.
• Heavy rain warning is in place until 4pm, with more rain expected to hit
• Strong wind gusts continue to affect motorists crossing the Harbour Bridge
• More than 80 insurance claims lodged
A family with a young baby had to be rescued from their property near Kumeū on an inflatable rescue boat after the deluge overnight - and strong winds are causing problems for Auckland Harbour Bridge motorists.
Water was lapping at the ranch sliders at Hayley and Dylan's single-level property, and they had been left without electricity or drinking water.
Resident Briar Dunn told the Herald said she would be picking them up and driving them to the police station before taking them to meet her mother, who was parked on the other side of the floodwaters and couldn't get through.
Dunn's mother would then drive them to their own parents' home.
"They pin dropped me their address because you couldn't see their mailbox," said Dunn.
Dunn and her family had offered to help with rescue efforts, using their vehicles and jet skis. Their house wasn't affected but their farm was.
"We're flooded ourselves. We live on a farm just out of town and we're underwater but I can't do anything until the water recedes so there's no point in me panicking.
"We're just out there doing whatever we can."
Insurer Vero says it has already received more than 80 claims related to the flooding and this number was "rising rapidly".
"Covid-19 restrictions make this difficult time even harder for our customers and we urge them to reach out and lodge a claim as soon as possible so that we can assist them," the company said.
Urgent repairs to make houses safe and secure was allowed under alert level 4 and customers could move to alternative accommodation if required.
Massive slips close roads
Auckland Transport said a number of roads are affected by flooding and slips in West Auckland and up to three might be out of action for sometime due to the extent of the damage.
On Te Henga Road, Waitakere, there are slips at a number of locations from Falls Road to Te Henga Quarry. There are also multiple slips on Mountain Road, Henderson Valley, between Hayes Road and Turanga Road. One lane of the road has collapsed on Lone Kauri Road, Karekare, outside number 38.
Other roads are closed while they are being assessed including Taupaki Road at the bridge, Pooks Road/Candia Road intersection, Bethells Road at Te Aute Ridge Road, Wintour Road in Waimauku, Whatapu Road in Huia and Huia Road near Huia Dam Road.
There may be other roads with flooding or debris including parts of Scenic Drive, Township Road in Waitakere and Piha Road, so please drive with extra care.
Auckland Transport hopes to have most of the flooded roads open, within a couple of days, once floodwaters have receded.
Detours will be clearly marked and warning notices will be in place to direct motorists away from closures.
A reminder that during Alert Level 4 only essential travel is allowed.
Police to patrol flood-affected zones
Police will be actively patrolling the areas affected by last night's flooding in West Auckland this evening and overnight.
Waitemata Inspector Mark Fergus said police have been working with Auckland Emergency Management, who are leading the response, as well as other agencies to help those affected by the weather event.
"We have assisted some people to leave their properties and want to reassure those people and the wider community that we will maintaining highly visible patrols throughout the night and coming days."
"Anyone who feels unsafe or whose property is in danger should call 111. Those who have been required to evacuate, or who need additional support or further information, can contact Auckland Emergency Management on 0800 22 22 00."
People, animals fled floodwaters
The Muriwai search and rescue squad has rescued nine people and assisted 35 others from floodwaters so far today.
A boy in a sleepout was rescued from Cane Rd, near Waimauku and a woman, her two sons, two dogs and a cat were rescued from Rheingold Pl in Kumeu.
Lifeguards have been tasked to Tapu Rd, Cane Rd, Matua Rd, Taupaki Rd and Rheingold Pl.
Waka Kotahi NZTA Auckland & Northland has just tweeted that strong wind gusts continue to affect motorists crossing the Auckland Harbour Bridge - especially for high-sided vehicles and motorcycles.
And Auckland Transport has warned motorists in the Waitakere area to delay any travel if possible and not to attempt to drive through flood waters.
Meanwhile other West Auckland residents have fled raging floodwaters with their animals, risking their own safety to keep their pets and livestock alive.
More than 50 homes in West Auckland have been evacuated by emergency services as the region was inundated with rain overnight.
Kumeū copped 201mm in 14 hours - the area's second wettest day since records began in 1943.
One man has been trapped in the second storey of his home since this morning after swimming three horses up the stairs to safety.
The Huapai man, who lives on Matua Rd, posted to the local Facebook page early this morning saying the family has lost everything.
"We have pushed ourselves to the limit swimming horses in and bringing them up into the second level of our house.
"We lost all of our cars. All of our belongings, everything is gone.
"Thankfully we were able to get the kids taken out by jetski, which is the most important thing."
They had headed out for the last pony who had disappeared. "She is absolutely buggered and barely made it."
Squashed into the top floor with three horses, two dogs and four puppies, he pleaded with anyone who had spare hay or dog food to bring it over.
Dozens of people offered food and transport as well as power banks for his dying phone.
He has thanked the community for their help, saying they were "amazing". The puppies have since been transported to safety but the man remains in his home and is still working out how to get the horses out, with the heavy rain set to continue into the afternoon.
They will also need to find somewhere to live with land for the horses.
• 'Traumatising': 50 homes evacuated in west Auckland, houses flooded, cars underwater, roads cut off
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Daniel Bott lives five minutes away on Rheingold Place, next to a floodplain reserve that borders the Kumeū River.
The bottom floor of his house is flooded to the top of the stairs and he's looking at water outside his window.
It's just him and his dog Missy inside. His phone is now running out of battery.
"My paddleboard's trapped under the stairs. I'll have to wait, it's going into a sketchy torrent of water - there's logs floating around. Logs and bloody furniture, bits of cars."
His van has floated away. "All my downstairs is a writeoff. Lawnmowers and motorbikes are all gone."
He was tempted to jump in the water and swim to safety but said it was too cold.
"I've gotta wait for the water to subside so I can paddle board out of here."
Bott's sister Lesa van Bott said her brother's lawn has a six metre drop to absorb floodwaters and stop them from reaching the house - but it hasn't worked.
"It's horrendous really. We can't get in to him because the bridge is flooded - even our 4WD can't get through."
Daniel was running on adrenaline, she said.
People in the area with boats are heading out to rescue others and help their animals.
"That's one of the things we love about here - Riverhead, Kumeū, Huapai - we band together. People are organising clothing, duvets, bedding, food and everything," she said.
Van Bott is in Riverhead where there's extensive flooding, with low-lying subdivisions flooded and the Riverhead Bridge underwater. A new subdivision in Duke St and a fairly new development in Crabb Fields Lane are flooded.
Samantha Mason has spent all morning rescuing pigs from a flooded Waimauku farm.
She had to wade out in the water, grab piglets and put them in her jacket and walk them back to the house. She said she has rescued about 20 piglets, some that are less than a week old. Some did not survive.
Mason said a jet ski is arriving to help try to save the rest.
Mason's house is at risk of being flooded. Water is within 10m of the building, and she said three people who live on the property might need to evacuate today.
More than 150 calls about flooding had come in to the fire service by 5am.
A witness told the Herald numerous homes were flooded in and around Birdwood Rd in Swanson and cars were being swept down the road.
"Houses are underwater, cars are flooded and kids are being plucked from their homes in their pyjamas."
The witness said emergency services were trying to help people and it's understood at least one home was at risk of collapsing.
He saw one man carrying two children through shoulder-height flood water.
Firefighters have resorted to using jet skis to reach trapped motorists as Kumeū township on the Twin Coast Highway is inundated.
Surf Life Saving Northern Region search and rescue supervisor John-Michael Swannix said about 9.10am the Muriwai squad was helping to rescue a woman and two children trapped in water at a Kumeū property.
And surf lifeguards in inflatable rescue boats smashed open a window at a flooded West Auckland shed to free a man who had been trapped since late last night, RNZ reports.
Swannix said five volunteers on two rescue boats set off to Kumeū at 5am.
"They arrived at an address on Tapu Rd first and rescued two men, one aged 45 to 50 and one in his 60s.
"One of those men had been inside the shed since at least 10pm [last night] and they had to break the window to actually rescue him."
Many of those rescued have been saved by local residents, who've heroically headed out in kayaks, boats and jetskis to get their neighbours to safety.