The storm may have blown over but the clean-up is ongoing as councils face multi-million dollar repair bills, insurance claims rise, and flooded schools prepare to re-open.
The deluge of rain late last week left a path of destruction with landslides, flooded homes, slumped roads and damaged water treatment plants.
Civil Defence Minister Peeni Henare, who visited Whangārei, Kawakawa and Moerewa on Sunday to survey the damage said the Government has put an initial $30,000 towards a Mayoral Relief Fund to support communities impacted by the storm. And more money is expected once the full cost of the storm damage is finalised.
Whangārei District Council chief executive Rob Forlong said the council is facing a multi-million dollar repair and clean-up bill.
"It will take months to recover. In the meantime our systems remain very vulnerable if we have another storm – even if it is much lighter than the one we've just had," he said.
Forlong said WDC was estimating the costs of damage and repairs and would be talking to the Government about what funding is available, looking at its work programmes and bringing forward maintenance budgets.
"People pulled together to help each other. Our roads, water and wastewater systems have come out of this with less damage than we could have expected.
"That doesn't make the situation good, but it means it is recoverable," he said.
Forlong acknowledged it had been a "hell of a year" with the worst drought in Whangārei's history and Covid-19 both affecting businesses, employment and the environment; and now a one-in-500 year rainfall event.
"Anyone who has not already been knocked about already will be affected by now," he said.
Residents are still being asked to save water after reservoirs dropped dramatically while the Whau Valley Water Treatment plant was shut down.
WDC water services manager Andrew Venmore said reservoirs had risen from 15 per cent to 25 per cent.
"We've made a little bit of progress but it is still very low."
Reservoir levels would need to be about 80 per cent before he was comfortable.
Meanwhile, early estimates show the cost of repairs in the Far North will be between $1.6m to $2m - this doesn't include the cost of repairing the Paihia Water Treatment Plant.
Far North District Council chief executive Shaun Clarke said 160 roads would need work to make them fully accessible and 86 would need significant slip repairs. Three bridges also needed fixing.
Benjamin Hope, spokesman for Kaipara District Council, said it looked like repairs and clean-up in the district will mostly be within the roading network and there was no estimated cost yet.
"Our teams are still out assessing the damages and will continue to throughout the next week or two. We still have a number of roads closed due to flooding, and bridge assets underwater that will need assessing,"
It's not just councils dealing with storm damage. AA Insurance had a 46 per cent increase in claims from the previous weekend - including four large property claims, and four schools in Northland have had to temporarily close.
Motatau School was closed yesterday, Whau Valley School and Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Te Rāwhitiroa are closed until Wednesday, and Hikurangi School is closed all week.
Henare said as well as the immediate $30,000 other initial support has also been arranged.
''Skip bins will be delivered to Whangārei and Moerewa so that residents can dispose of water-damaged household goods. Civil Defence Emergency Management will also arrange for septic tanks to be pumped in Moerewa once the ground has dried out,'' he said.
"This is a very challenging time for the community but I'm proud of how well they have responded and supported each other during this tough time. We will stay in contact with local councils to see what further assistance may be needed as site assessments are completed in the coming days.''