Parts of the Coromandel were without power for a fourth day and many roads remain closed as town’s continue to cleanup after Cyclone Gabrielle.
Coromandel-Thames Civil Defence Gary Towler told Checkpoint with people still displaced from their homes, the focus was on welfare support.
A break in the weather allowed for power restoration into Tairua and the roading network was opened up enough for Powerco to bring in big generators, Towler said.
“Still a long way to go but the generators are working well up there.”
Though, he said a “good percentage” of people in Tairua and Pauanui were still without power, as were seven or eight smaller communities.
Most local roads were still compromised, he said, with 40-50 slips on these roads keeping a lot of them closed.
On Wednesday evening, Waka Kotahi said it was quite confident by late Wednesday night or Thursday morning the SH25a around the Coromandel would be open but subject to a lot of traffic management.
“The supply chain should be able to resume to some degree tomorrow [Thursday] and so fingers crossed that’s going to happen.”
Slips on peninsula roads north of Whitanga have blocked access to some areas.
“There are some farmers in the northern third of Mercury Bay, up in the top part of the Coromandel who are fast running out of fuel and we are trying to establish access for them with Fonterra and Fed Farmers too to get some support up there.”
RNZ reporter in Tairua, Leonard Powell told Checkpoint the mood in the town had really lifted as power started to come back but the water supply was now a real concern.
Earlier today, the community response group said the town water supply was down to 3 percent and without power to the treatment system this number would drop.
People in Tairua and Pauanui were still being urged to really conserve water and not shower or flush the toilet unless it was really necessary.
There were concerns the water would have sedement in it and need boiling when it did come back.
Powell said the army dropped off supplies of food and water today in Tairua.
Story Credit: rnz.co.nz