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Communities, council rally in support

7 December 2012

Communities, council rally in support

Upper Harbour Local Board Chair Margaret Miles and Auckland Mayor Len Brown have praised local communities and council staff for their prompt response to supporting those people affected by yesterday’s tornado.

Mrs Miles, whose own property at Paremoremo in Auckland’s north-west sustained damage, says it is so often in times of tragedy that the strength of our communities comes to the fore.

“The hearts of our Upper Harbour Local Board members go out to the families of the victims and we’ve been heartened to see so many fellow residents rally to support their neighbours.”

Mayor Len Brown spoke with Mrs Miles and other community leaders at Whenuapai and Hobsonville yesterday afternoon to assess the situation, consult emergency services and comfort the locals.

“Auckland Council Civil Defence, welfare staff and building inspectors have been working closely with emergency services. We stand ready to do whatever is needed to help our people recover from this devastating event,” Len Brown says.

Margaret Miles was at home when the weather bomb went off, sending her gazebo airborne before crashing through a window.

“It was very frightening but nothing compared to the loss of life and more significant property damage just a few miles away,” she says.

Henderson-Massey Local Board Chair Vanessa Neeson adds her condolences to those who lost their loved ones following yesterday's tornado and her sincere best wishes to those who lost their homes and endured other hardships as a result of the storm.

"My own family was caught up in the tornado's path so I have some first-hand understanding of how it feels," she said. "Many of us in Hobsonville will be starting to rebuild our lives today."

Preliminary estimates have put the cost of the tornado at $11m, although this is hardly the first thing on the council’s mind as it moves from response to recovery mode.

Auckland Council’s Civil Defence Manager Clive Manley briefed Prime Minister John Key before the local Helensville MP inspected the damage for himself.

ENDS

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