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Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Flash Floods, Landslides Continue to Roil New Zealand for the Third Day

More than 2,000 calls for aid and about 70 evacuations were made as a result of the flooding

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Sadaf Hasan
Sadaf Hasan
Aspiring reporter covering trending topics

NEW ZEALAND: Heavy rain hit the north island of New Zealand again on Sunday, causing flash floods, landslides, and the closing of roads. Four people died, and a fifth was found dead after being reported missing.

Auckland, the largest city in New Zealand with a population of 1.6 million, has been battered by rain since Friday and is still under a state of emergency. 

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More severe weather is expected for the north island on Sunday and Monday, according to the country’s weather forecaster, MetService. The report warned that surface and flash flooding might result from heavy rain.

Since then, the emergency has shifted to the south, with Waitomo District, 220 kilometres (137 miles) from Auckland, announcing a state of emergency late on Saturday.

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In Onewhero, a small rural community about 70 kilometres (43 miles) south of Auckland, a man was reported missing on Friday after being swept away. 

The police have now confirmed that he has passed away.

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Carmel Sepuloni, Deputy Prime Minister, told journalists in Auckland that “the most horrific part of it is that we’ve lost lives.”

The impact of climate change varies by region, but it makes heavy rainfall periods in New Zealand more frequent and extreme. On Saturday, climate change minister James Shaw mentioned the connection to climate change when he expressed his support for people affected by floods on Twitter.

After heavy rains “caused several slides, floods, and damage to roadways,” police announced on Sunday that they were assisting with traffic control and road closures in the Waitomo District.

Police reported “widespread flooding” and a landslide in the adjacent Bay of Plenty that had destroyed a home and endangered nearby properties.

Authorities said that thousands of homes were still without water, and hundreds lacked electricity.

Nevertheless, a representative for Air New Zealand announced that it would restart its international service into and out of Auckland at noon on Sunday (2300 GMT on Saturday).

Less than a week after taking office, Prime Minister Chris Hipkins visited flood-affected homes on Saturday while flying over Auckland in a helicopter. He called the city’s flood damage “unprecedented” in recent memory.

More than 2,000 calls for aid and about 70 evacuations were made due to the flooding in and around Auckland, the country’s largest city, as thelocal news agency reported on Saturday.

Also Read: Karnataka CM Basavaraj Bommai Blamed the Previous Gov for Bengaluru’s Floods


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