Storm causes floods, blackouts in New Zealand's biggest city

by Reuters
Sunday, 12 March 2017 06:04 GMT

A view of the city skyline from Westhaven in Auckland in this 2011 archive photo. REUTERS/Jacky Naegelen

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Ten people were rescued from rising floodwaters in Auckland and 321 properties were flooded

By Harry Pearl

SYDNEY, March 12 (Reuters) - A powerful storm caused flooding, landslides and blackouts in New Zealand on Sunday, leaving thousands of homes without power, emergency services officials said.

Winds of more than 100 km (62 miles) per hour toppled trees and power lines and heavy rain caused flash floods which closed roads and inundated homes in Auckland, the country's largest city, officials said. There were no reports of injury.

Nearly 3,000 homes were without power on Sunday evening, according to New Zealand electricity grid operator Vector.

"We are working as quickly as we can to respond to people's needs and make sure areas are safe," John Dragicevich, Auckland Civil Defence and Emergency Management Director, said in a statement.

Ten people were rescued from rising floodwaters in Auckland and 321 properties were flooded, the New Zealand Fire Service said.

Storms have hit large parts of the upper North Island for the past five days.

(Reporting by Harry Pearl; Editing by Stephen Coates)

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