Police name Auckland tornado victims
Fri, 07 Dec 2012 10:03a.m.
By Angela Beswick
Police have released the names of three men killed when a series of tornadoes struck west Auckland yesterday.
They were Tom Stowers, 42, from Massey, Keith Langford, 60, from Tuakau and Brendon Johnson, 22 from Massey.
At least seven people were injured, some seriously, in the severe weather shortly before 1pm yesterday.
Police and the Civil Defence have now moved into a recovery phase in the aftermath of the tornado.
A cordon remains in place in Hobsonville.
Civil Defence are working as quickly as possible to establish which houses in the effected area of Hobsonville are safe for their owners to return.
"In the meantime I ask everyone to be patient, " Waitemata Police District Commander Superintendent Bill Searle says.
Police extend their sympathy and condolences to the immediate families of the three deceased.
The Government helpline for people affected by yesterday’s weather in Hobsonville and Whenuapai - 0800 77 9997.
Residents returning home - slowly
Around seven carloads of Hobsonville residents have been allowed back into their homes following yesterday’s devastating tornadoes in west Auckland.
This morning the first two groups of Clark Rd residents were accompanied back to their homes by Civil Defence staff. The cordon remains in place and a few residents have gathered at the cordon points.
Police and Civil Defence personnel are yet to decide when the cordon will be lifted, but it is likely to be this afternoon.
Civil Defence are conducting inspections and only restoring power to houses which are deemed safe.
Emma Gill was able to get inside the cordon on Thursday to check the damage to her house.
She told NZ Newswire that once all her three adult sons came home, they got to work clearing the driveway and sweeping up glass.
An assessor came through the house to survey the damage and some windows were boarded up.
"I was happily able to leave," Ms Gill said.
"It's frustrating we can't get past the cordon... but if I can't get past, nobody else can and therefore our possessions are safe."
Karen Bramley's mother is still inside the cordon and stayed in her damaged house overnight.
Ms Bramley said a few tiles had come off the roof, a window was cracked and there was a water leak in the house.
She had been waiting at the cordon for about 90 minutes.
"It sucks being left in the cold, we don't know what's going on."
Tradespeople have been arriving at Hobsonville on Friday morning as the clean-up gets under way and a truck with a skip bin on the back was able to get through the cordon.
Several trucks from power company Vector have also arrived, as hundreds of residents remain without electricity.
3 News / NZN
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