South Auckland tornado: more than 1,200 houses mainly in Papatoetoe and Manurewa affected.
The dire Covid-19 situation in Fiji means the parents of Janesh Prasad, the man killed in the freak South Auckland tornado, will not be able to properly say goodbye to their son.
Prasad, a diesel mechanic in his 40s, was working at a container yard in Wiri on Saturday morning when the tornado ravaged the Auckland ports site.
The Stellar Machinery employee was said to have been working on a forklift truck when he died.
Prasad had almost no larger whānau in New Zealand, having migrated from Fiji about six years ago with his wife Mala and their children Ashley, 13, and Jesh, 10. His parents, who were 70 or 80 years old, still lived in Fiji.
Vishal Kumar, who said he and Prasad were “like brothers,” told most of Prasad’s family in Fiji that his body could have been sent home so his parents could say goodbye to him beforehand. not to be cremated. But with the pandemic raging, it was difficult.
And without any non-quarantine travel between New Zealand and Fiji – which recorded 150 new cases in a 24-hour period ending at 8 a.m. on June 19 – Prasad’s parents were unable to make the trip. .
“It’s hard to get the words out of [Prasad’s parents]”Kumar said, referring to their immense grief.
Equally shocked were the Henderson-based Prasad family at the death of their husband and father.
“The whole family is trying to come to terms with what just happened,” Kumar said.
“What we read and what we hear is beyond imagination, you know?
“For me, I don’t want to know the details because it’s quite difficult.”
Prasad was the sole breadwinner in the family and financially supported his whānau in Fiji. A Givealittle page had been created which had attracted over $ 20,000 on Sunday night.
However, Kumar said family residency was one of their main concerns as Prasad was close to being granted permanent residency.
“We’re still wondering what’s going to happen because he was on the Work to Residence visa and his two years were just around the corner.”
Kumar described Prasad and his family as “very tight” and “happy”. He spoke of Prasad’s generosity, often helping people at funerals.
“It was just his nature [to help people who were grieving]. “
Prasad would be said farewell by his friends and family on Wednesday. Prasad’s family wanted to thank the people of New Zealand for the support they received.
A truck driver at the container yard was also injured. Dozens of shipping containers overturned with at least one container weighing 30 tonnes thrown into the air during the abnormal event.
Meanwhile, more than 1,200 homes have been affected including more than 60 uninhabitable after the tornado ripped roofs and garage doors, uprooted trees, smashed windows, overturned vehicles and left stunned residents curl up and pray. in their homes.
“The noise was horrible… it looked like a plane was landing on our house,” said Annelise Greenfield, who huddled in the hallway with her husband and three children, kissing and praying, as the tornado made its way to Grande Vue Rd at Papatoetoe.
“My 10 year old daughter thought she was going to die.”
On their way out, they found their letterbox at the front door, the roof of their shed on a nearby street, a neighbor’s van overturned, and several neighboring houses without roofs.
“It was quite devastating and there are a lot of people in shock.”
After a night without power, Annelise had the immediate task today of taking her two teenage daughters to the ballet in Papakura before being signed up for surgery today.
The Greenfields also need to repair damage to their home for 15 years before moving to a new home in Shelly Park in East Auckland and the new owner is moving in.
The sale of the house became unconditional two weeks ago. Annelise said she informed the new owner of the damage caused by the tornado. The new owner’s insurance will cover the repairs.
Melissa Siaea lived in a building in Papatoetoe, and every unit was gutted, the entire roof of the building torn off, and most of the windows were blotted out.
“Of all the windows, we are the only ones who haven’t been shattered,” she said.
It was a small consolation. She said rain fell in Auckland’s southern suburbs after yesterday’s tornado and again today, turning her floor into a swamp.
The government had given Auckland Council $ 100,000 to support residents.
Several witnesses described the tornado as lasting only about 30 to 45 seconds. Auckland Mayor Phil Goff said he was happy that more lives were not killed during the freak event.
“It is a miracle that there were not dozens of serious injuries and even deaths.”
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This notice was published: 2021-06-20 17:00:00