To listen click here
Auckland, May 9 – New Zealand’s largest city of Auckland on Tuesday declared a local state of emergency due to floods and torrential rainfall.
Traffic was at a standstill in Auckland, as the city entered its third state of emergency due to severe weather this year, reports Xinhua news agency.
The meteorological agency has issued weather warnings and watches for many parts of the North Island.
The North Island was affected by severe floods in January and Cyclone Gabrielle in February which killed at least 11 people.
The government will step up support for those affected by flooding in Auckland, said Minister for Emergency Management Kieran McAnulty.
The National Emergency Management Agency’s National Coordination Centre has been activated, and the government stands ready to provide any support that is needed, McAnulty said.
Auckland Emergency Management has opened a Civil Defence Centre to assist those that have been displaced or need assistance following Tuesday’s severe weather.
The government has estimated the cost of asset damage from the floods and Cyclone Gabrielle in the first two months of this year at between NZ$9 billion and NZ$14.5 billion, with half of that related to infrastructure owned by central or local government such as roads.