Auckland Airport says flight backlog continues to clear, asks only passengers on international flights to come to terminal

Forty stranded passengers spent Monday night on stretchers in the international terminal.
Forty stranded passengers spent Monday night on stretchers in the international terminal. Photo credit: Getty Images

Auckland Airport says they're continuing to clear the backlog of passengers left stranded at the airport after Friday's deluge of rain. 

Auckland Airport chief executive Carrie Hurihanganui said 40 stranded passengers spent the night on stretchers in the international terminal, supported by Auckland Airport staff and community response organisations.

On top of this, the Auckland Airport Novotel accommodated around five people who needed some additional support. 

BBQ sausages were handed out to any travellers and staff who needed something hot to eat, Hurihanganui said.

"We know how disruptive and demanding this experience has been for many passengers; we are genuinely sorry for the distress they have faced, and we want to again thank everyone for their patience in getting through this remarkably demanding time," Hurihanganui said.

Auckland Airport chief executive Carrie Hurihanganui.
Auckland Airport chief executive Carrie Hurihanganui. Photo credit: Newshub

Hurihanganui asks for only travellers with an international flight booked and scheduled to come to the international terminal. 

"With forecasts predicting more heavy rain and high winds today, we also ask travellers to keep an eye on airline updates for any changes to flight schedules," Hurihanganui said. 

She said 109 international flights are scheduled to arrive and depart on Tuesday, with around 26,000 travellers expected to travel internationally. 

"Auckland Airport teams have continued to work around the clock to support airlines in clearing the backlog of stranded passengers after Friday's extraordinary weather event," Hurihanganui said.

"Check-in is open but water damage to some of the systems means there are fewer check-in desks operating and some manual processes in place. Airline and baggage handling teams are working quickly to manage in this tricky operational environment, but travellers may experience longer queues than normal." 

With more rain scheduled to hit Auckland later on Tuesday, Hurihanganui said operational and engineering teams have plans in place to manage it.

Sucker trucks and pumps are on standby, and more than 600 sandbags are in position around terminals at the airport. 

Hurihanganui said all stormwater systems have been checked for debris, with engineering and contractor crews on standby on Tuesday and through into the night. There is also emergency food, water and bedding ready.