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Vector urges the public to prepare for further bad weather

Vector urges the public to prepare for further bad weather this weekend

Auckland energy distributor Vector is urging the public to be extra careful and vigilant around trees throughout Auckland, as the weather looks set to worsen this weekend.

MetService has issued a Severe Weather Watch for Auckland, with the potential for heavy rain on Saturday and possibly Sunday. East to northeast winds are expected to reach gale force on Saturday, and may reach severe gale in exposed places. WeatherWatch is also warning of heavy rain and strong winds – this time coming in from the opposite direction of the storm just over two weeks ago, which may loosen or break already damaged branches and trees.

The storm on April 10 brought heavy rain and destructive winds of more than 200km/h, which caused widespread power outages and brought down thousands of trees throughout the region.

While repairing damage to the network in the days after the storm, Vector field crews reported hundreds of damaged or weakened trees on a lean, or large branches which are barely attached.

The concern of Vector and the Auckland Council is that further rain or strong winds will see more trees or branches fall, which poses a risk to public safety.

If you see damaged trees directly on or very close to power lines please report this to Vector via their call centre – 0508 VECTOR (0508 832 867).

Anyone concerned by weakened or damaged trees on public land are urged to contact Auckland Council on 09 301 0101.

People concerned by weakened or damaged trees on their own properties should contact an arborist as soon as possible.

In the meantime, our advice is to maintain a safe distance from damaged or weakened trees, and where safe to do so, keep cars away from areas of concern.

Tips to prepare for potential weather events and to stay safe in a storm:

Check the MetService or Weatherwatch website for weather updates

Stay well clear of fallen power lines or damaged electrical equipment and treat them as live at all times.

Stay well clear of damaged or weakened trees.

Watch out for falling tree branches as these can cause damage to power lines.

Avoid possible damage to electrical appliances (in the unlikely event there is a power surge when the power is restored) by switching off appliances at the wall
Keep a torch and spare batteries handy and ensure that you have at least one telephone that does not rely on electricity for operation
Ensure that an alternate fuel is always available for cooking (e.g. gas for BBQ)
People using medical equipment that relies on electricity should ensure they are prepared for power disruptions and if there is an immediate health threat, contact their health provider or call 111.

If it’s safe to do so, check your gutters and drains, secure large outdoor items and move any loose outdoor equipment or furniture inside.

Ensure you have a supply of food and provisions in case you find your property isolated.

Check in on your neighbours to see if they need any assistance

ENDS

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