Weather: Strong winds cut electricity across North Island regions

Power lines.
Power lines. Photo credit: File


Thousands have been left without electricity in the North Island on Monday after gale force winds caused damage to power lines.

The blast of strong winds caused widespread damage to Powerco's electricity network at 15 different supply points.

Although some customers have been reconnected, Powerco's website shows that roughly 4000 properties are still affected. People in locations such as Ashurst, Marton, Halcombe, Feilding, Apiti, Aokautere, Bunnythorpe and Eketāhuna are currently without power.

Powerco Network Operations manager Phil Marsh said they were expecting wind, but not as strong as it was.

He said the worst hit was at about 2pm, battering an area from Raetihi south to Eketāhuna.

Marsh said lines were down with several cases of fallen trees and foliage due to the gales.

"We have contractors in the field but lines should still be treated as live at all times."

He said repair works would continue into the night, attempting to reconnect as many people as possible.

At 7:30pm, Aurora Energy said in a Facebook post that some of its customers in 18 areas across Dunedin were without power due to severe winds.

"We urge people to keep safe around electricity and securely fix trampolines, outdoor furniture and other heavy items to the ground," Aurora Energy said.

"Please keep clear of fallen power lines or damaged electrical equipment and treat them as live at all times."

MetService has also issued a severe wind warning for North Otago and Dunedin, saying westerly gales could reach 120 km/h in exposed places.

Areas affected by the power outage include North East Valley, Mornington, Fairfield, Waverley, South Dunedin, Bradford, Woodside, Company Bay, Broad Bay, and Sawyers Bay.

Aurora Energy said crews were working to assess the damage and restore power as soon as possible.