A state of emergency was declared on Friday night to deal with severe flooding in Auckland and the Waitomo region, after torrential rains. The extreme weather event had immense impacts on people’s homes, businesses and core infrastructure and led to road closures across the region. All flights from Auckland Airport were cancelled and Civil Defence Centres were operating around Auckland over the weekend for those in urgent need of shelter.
Power company Vector said flooding caused widespread outages, particularly in West Auckland.
Emergency Management Minister Kieran McAnulty said the first port of call for Aucklanders waking to flooded and damaged properties should be to their insurance company.
Several supermarkets were affected by the floods and closed temporarily. Chris Quin, Chief Executive of Foodstuffs North said on Sunday: “It’s been a very intense 36 hours for our co-operative and partners as we’ve worked our way through the effects of this very significant weather event. We’ve now fully assessed the impact on our locally owned and operated PAK’nSAVE, New World and Four Square stores and are pleased to say, people are safe and all but three Foodstuffs stores are open and operating today and every suburb impacted by the floods has a shopping option nearby.
“At one point we had 14 stores impacted in a severe to moderate way, so to now have only three stores not able to open, and with clear plans in place to get them open, it’s a huge testament to the mahi of our teams. It’s been awesome to see everyone pull together to make sure every community impacted has a local option to get their groceries.
“Every hour counts when you’re picking and transporting groceries – and while we had a few delays with transport, we’re in good supply and thanks to the dedication of our amazing Distribution Centre teams, we’re catching up and in pretty good shape under the circumstances.
“It’s still too soon to tell what impact the rain will have on locally grown produce partners. Our buying teams are staying in close contact with our suppliers and growers so we can anticipate any potential issues with supply and work with them on their recovery plans.
“We’d like to thank our customers for only buying what they need, so everyone gets their fair share when they shop while we recover.
“Early yesterday morning we stood up our emergency funding support for flood impacted communities across Tāmaki Makaurau. To date we’ve donated over $100,000 worth of goods to our community partners so they can replenish their shelves and keep supporting their local communities. Over the coming days our teams will keep working with our community partners to ensure they’re well supported.”
Another heavy rain warning has been issued for Northland and the Auckland region for Tuesday 31 January.
Where to get help in a severe weather event
· If your life is at risk, phone 111
· If you need urgent accommodation assistance, phone 0800 22 22 00
· For welfare assistance, you can call the Ministry of Social Development on 0800 400 100
· To report flooding, damage to drains, or stormwater issues, log your issue online at aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/report-problem
· For advice for businesses affected by the weather: https://www.business.govt.nz/risks-and-operations/extreme-weather-information-for-business/
· For advice from the NZ Insurance Council visit https://www.icnz.org.nz/industry/media-releases/flood-advice-stay-safe-and-contact-your-insurer-early/
· For updates on the state of emergency visit https://www.aucklandemergencymanagement.org.nz/major-incident/flooding-2023