South Auckland tornado: more than 1,200 houses mainly in Papatoetoe and Manurewa affected.

The government is contributing $ 100,000 to a Mayors Relief Fund to support Auckland communities affected by the Papatoetoe tornado, Acting Emergency Management Minister Kris Faafoi said today.

Faafoi said the government will provide funding to Auckland Council to help the community as it sees fit. Ensuring the well-being of uninsured families was a priority, he said.

Heavy rains and thunderstorms were forecast for the neighborhood yesterday morning, but it is unlikely that a civil defense notification could have alerted people in time, Faafoi said.

“I’m not a meteorologist, but predicting tornadoes is quite difficult,” he said.

Several local witnesses described the tornado as lasting only about 30 to 45 seconds.

But Faafoi said the disaster was a reminder of the need for households and communities to prepare for emergencies.

Acting Minister of Emergency Management Kris Faafoi.  Photo / Mark Mitchell
Acting Minister of Emergency Management Kris Faafoi. Photo / Mark Mitchell

Auckland Mayor Phil Goff said the wreckage in the streets showed just how easily the tornado could have been an even more serious tragedy.

“It is a miracle that there were not dozens of serious injuries and even deaths,” he said.

Goff said the power of the tornado was striking – but so was the strength of the community.

“We never win against nature when you have something like a tornado.”

But he added: “No one I spoke to yesterday or today has come to complain about the harshness of life, whether it has happened to them.”

Goff thanked members of the emergency services and urged members of the public not to be wrong.

Auckland Emergency Management General Manager Kate Crawford thanked the community for their “truly inspiring” support and cooperation.

She said residents of the tornado-affected area should always be careful of potential dangers, such as damaged roofs.

The financial assistance comes as Auckland Emergency Management, in collaboration with emergency response agencies and Auckland Council teams, continues today to support those affected by yesterday’s tornado and to help out. focus on cleaning efforts.

One person died, another injured, and residents of more than 1,200 homes, mostly Papatoetoe – 60 of which are now uninhabitable – were left behind after an ordinary Saturday morning turned into terror when a tornado ravaged south Auckland.

It was just before 8:30 a.m. when the tornado hit, within seconds, ripping roofs and garage doors, uprooting trees, smashing windows, knocking over a truck and utility poles – some on cars – and leaving residents stunned. curl up and pray in their homes from Manurewa to Papatoetoe.

They estimated that more than 1,200 homes had been affected by the tornado, the majority without electricity.

“My heart goes out to the family and friends who have lost a loved one, and to those who have been injured. I know it has been a tough weekend for the people of Auckland, with many lives disrupted and many damaged homes and businesses, ”says Faafoi.

“Although it is too early to know the full cost of the damage, this first contribution will help these communities get back on their feet.

“We will keep in touch with the Auckland council, which is contributing a similar amount to the fund, to see what additional help may be needed as the site reviews are completed in the coming days,” he said. he declares.

Vector staff repair damage to power lines on Hayward Rd during the tornado that swept through Papatoetoe.  Photo / Alex Burton
Vector staff repair damage to power lines on Hayward Rd during the tornado that swept through Papatoetoe. Photo / Alex Burton

Mayors’ relief funds provide an additional way to help communities bounce back from an emergency. Communities and local councils are in a good position to know exactly what they need so that this funding can be used, for example, to meet the needs of affected families and individuals, community organizations or marae. The funds will go to the Auckland City Council Mayor’s Relief Fund to be distributed throughout the region.

“This funding is in addition to other aid people may be eligible for through the Department of Social Development,” Faafoi said.

Auckland Emergency Management has set up a wellness center at the Otara Pool and Leisure Center. People who need help but cannot make it to the center can call Auckland Emergency Management on 0800 22 22 00.

“I would like to recognize the extraordinary efforts of emergency management staff, first responders, volunteers, businesses, community leaders and residents who have also provided support.

“There is still a recovery effort ahead for this affected community. They should know that the government will stand by their side,” the minister said.

Death in Auckland harbors

At an Auckland Ports yard on Wiri Station Rd, dozens of stacked shipping containers collapsed as the powerful spinning air funnel passed through Wiri, with at least one container weighing 30 tonnes tossed into the air .

A contractor not employed directly for the Auckland council-owned port company was killed and an on-site truck driver was injured, but it is understood that fallen shipping containers may not have been directly responsible for the fatality .

The injured truck driver was taken to Middlemore hospital with moderate injuries, a St John spokeswoman said.

Auckland Mayor Phil Goff said he was told someone in the yard died after the force of the wind threw them some distance in the air and then struck a solid object.

“I want to be careful about this [cause of death]. I had conversations about it… I spoke to Ports of Auckland, they said the force of the wind was so strong that 30 ton containers were picked up and blown in the air. “

The tornado ravaged a container yard in Auckland ports in south Auckland.  Photo / Hayden Woodward
The tornado ravaged a container yard in Auckland ports in south Auckland. Photo / Hayden Woodward

A person in the yard described the scene as “carnage”, with distraught workers observing three ambulances, a specialized response team and several police officers rushing to help, with someone “working” in the back. an ambulance.

In addition to the overturned containers, including the 30-ton one blown by the wind, signs from the nearby highway were also blown at the site, Auckland Ports spokesman Matt Ball said.

Because the tornado was localized and brief, and because it did not pass any anemometers, the wind speed was not known, said Gerard Bellam, forecaster at MetService.

The rain gauge at Auckland Airport in Mangere recorded 25mm an hour until 9am yesterday, with the downpours “a good indication of how much energy was around,” Bellam said.

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This notice was published: 2021-06-20 02:30:00


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