New Zealand weather: Four dead after record rainfall causes flooding and landslides | World News
Four people have died as torrential rain continues to hit New Zealand’s largest city, causing flash floods and landslides.
Auckland and much of the northern island remain in a state of emergency following record rainfall since Friday and a more severe weather forecast for the coming days.
The flooding resulted in houses flooding, road closures and a train derailment.
Thousands of homes remain without electricity and hundreds without running water, authorities say.
A video posted online showed chest-deep water in some places.
Auckland’s emergency controller Rachel Kelleher said: “We know there could be more inclement weather tonight.”
Deputy Prime Minister New Zealand Carmel Sepuloni said: “The worst thing about it is that we lost lives.”
Police said they found the body of one man in a flooded culvert and another in a flooded car park.
Firefighters and rescuers found a third body after a landslide brought down a house in Remuer, they said. suburb of Auckland.
Another person, who was initially thought to be missing after being swept away by flood waters, has since been presumed dead.
Flooding in Auckland caused major disruption and Elton John’s concert was canceled minutes before the start
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Meanwhile, Chris Hipkinswho was prime minister less than a week after Jacinda Ardern resignedflew to Auckland in a military aircraft before taking a helicopter to inspect the damage.
“Our priority is to keep the people of Oakland safe, to provide them with housing and access to the basic services they need,” said Hipkins, who visited flood-affected homes.
He added: “This is an unprecedented event in recent memory.”
Air New Zealand has resumed both international and domestic flights to and from Auckland after the airport was forced to temporarily close last week.
“It’s climate change”
Changing of the climate led to more frequent and more intense flooding in New Zealand, County Environment Minister James Shaw highlighted when he tweeted his support for those affected by the floods.
“This is climate change,” he wrote.
“We all have a responsibility to make sure the New Zealand we leave to our children is safe and livable.”
Friday was the rainiest day recorded in Auckland, forecasters said, as the amount of rain that normally falls for an entire summer fell in one day.
In just three hours, more than six inches of rain fell in some places.
The weather called Sir Elton John cancel his concert shortly before it was supposed to start on Friday night.
Sir Elton’s second concert, scheduled to take place at Mt Smart Stadium in Auckland on Saturday night, has also been cancelled.
The delay in declaring a state of emergency has been criticized
Oakland Mayor Wayne Brown has responded to criticism that his office did not adequately communicate the gravity of the situation and delayed the declaration of a state of emergency until around 9:30 p.m. Friday.
According to him, the terms for declaring an emergency were determined by experts.