After Cyclone Gabrielle, which caused massive flooding and landslides in New Zealand, at least four people died, including a child.
Police said they had “grave concerns” about several missing people in the Hawke’s Bay or Tairawhiti regions of the North Island.
The country’s northern region was hit by a cyclone on Monday, causing more damage than any other weather event in decades.
According to police, at least four people have been confirmed killed in the storm. This includes a child who was caught in rising waters at Eskdale on Hawke’s Bay.
According to Emergency Management Minister Kieran McCAnulty, the body of a volunteer firefighter had been retrieved from a landslide which destroyed a house in Auckland.
He also said that a Hawke’s Bay landslide had also resulted in the death of a woman.
On Tuesday night, a body was discovered on the shore at Bay View, Napier.
Police claim that 1,442 people were registered online as “uncontactable” following the cyclone. However, this does not include duplicate reports of the same person who have been reported uncontactable to different people.
Police released a statement saying that while we expect many of the reports will be due to communication lines being down, they can confirm that there are many people missing in Hawke’s Bay or Tairawhiti, which raises grave concerns.
Helicopters will assist with 25 rescues for individuals and families on Wednesday.
New Zealand declared the third ever emergency Tuesday. This allows the government to provide support for affected areas and additional resources.
The alert covers Auckland, New Zealand’s largest city. It also covers the Northland, Tairawhiti and Bay of Plenty regions.
The military was called in to assist with evacuations and provide supplies in the most affected areas of North Island.
Due to damage roads, some areas of the region were cut off.
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Authorities said that a weather station in Napier and Hawke’s Bay recorded three times as much rain Monday night than usual for February.
On Tuesday, more than 300 people were rescued from the flooded area of the North Island east coast. This included 60 people who were trapped under one roof.
He said that “our emergency services are still performing rescues and land searches at a number of locations.”
He said that around 9,000 people were forced from their homes by Monday’s floodwaters and landslides.
McAnulty stated that everyone knows there is a long road ahead as we deal with the extensive damage to homes and businesses and other essential parts of our infrastructure.
“This is a major disaster, and it will take many weeks for the areas most affected to recover.”
Two weeks ago, a severe storm brought heavy flooding to the area . Four people were killed in the city.
Air New Zealand cancelled 500 flights following the cyclone. This included domestic routes from Auckland.