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Cyclone Gabrielle Hits New Zealand, Leaving More Than 58,000 Without Power

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Cyclone Gabrielle Hits New Zealand, Leaving More Than 58,000 Without Power

(CTN NEWS) – Residents in New Zealand’s north are preparing for a challenging night as Cyclone Gabrielle batters the nation with violent winds and rain.

During the storm, at least 46,000 houses lost electricity, and hundreds more flights were canceled.

Nearly a third of the 5.1 million people in these nine regions are now under a state of emergency.

The storm was anticipated to reach its height on Monday night, and rain was predicted to last into Tuesday.

According to local media, authorities in Auckland, the largest city in New Zealand, had ordered the evacuation of 50 residences near a 30 m-tall tower that was in danger of collapsing.

Cyclone Gabrielle lashes New Zealand, disrupts power supply and flights grounded. Photograph:(AFP)

There are also dozens of evacuation centers set up around the city.

Emergency services have also reported people caught by rising waters, including a family stranded on a flooded roadway. Authorities have reportedly received more than 100 cries for assistance since Sunday.

Just a few weeks after Auckland and the surrounding areas experienced record rainfall and flooding that resulted in the deaths of four people, Cyclone Gabrielle is now affecting New Zealand’s north.

Chris Hipkins, the prime minister of New Zealand, was left behind in the northern city on Monday as flights to Wellington, the country’s capital, and other destinations were canceled.

He remarked, “Severe weather event has come on the tail of extreme weather.” “It’s probably going to become worse before it gets better,”

He unveiled an NZ$11.5 million ($7.3 million; £6 million) aid package on Monday.

/ GETTY IMAGES

For just the third time in the nation’s history, the government is considering issuing a nationwide state of emergency, according to emergency management minister Kieran McAnulty.

Local government agencies have more authority to deal with dangerous conditions when an emergency has been declared, including limiting travel and offering assistance.

The city of Whangarei, located north of Auckland, received 100.5mm of rain in the previous 12 hours, according to Metservice, New Zealand’s meteorological organization.

Monday would be an “important day,” according to Mr. McAnulty, because of the “very dangerous” confluence of strong winds and heavy rain.

The Northland region was blasted by winds of up to 140 km/h (87 mph), and the Auckland Harbour Bridge had to be shut down because of 110 km/h gusts.

/ GETTY IMAGES

The minister cautioned that it might take days to repair the power grid for families left without electricity because the harsh weather made it “unsafe” to work on the network.

Gabrielle’s strength had previously been decreased, but the Metservice stated in its most recent warning on Monday that it will still bring “very heavy rain and potentially damaging winds.”

Despite not yet making landfall, the cyclone has already uprooted trees, destroyed roads, and brought down power lines.

People are being encouraged not to travel before Tuesday due to the closure of numerous schools and local government offices in Auckland and the North Island.

Meanwhile, the cancellation of 509 flights caused delays for about 10,000 foreign Air New Zealand passengers.

Normal operations are anticipated to resume on Tuesday and aid recovery efforts; the national carrier has added 11 extra domestic flights to its schedule.

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Alishba Waris is an independent journalist working for CTN News. She brings a wealth of experience and a keen eye for detail to her reporting. With a knack for uncovering the truth, Waris isn't afraid to ask tough questions and hold those in power accountable. Her writing is clear, concise, and cuts through the noise, delivering the facts readers need to stay informed. Waris's dedication to ethical journalism shines through in her hard-hitting yet fair coverage of important issues.

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