Storm aftermath reveals damage to Maraetai

By Mānia Clarke-Mamanu

The East Auckland coastal community of Maraetai are facing a major clean-up following the storm which battered the area and many parts of the country this week. 

Zaelene Maxwell-Butler cut short her holiday when she heard her homeland would be hit by the storm.

“The land banks have been broken away by the sea. You can see the banks that have eroded away, underneath the walkways. That's not good.”

Today locals rolled up their jeans and brooms were on deck to sweep away the last of the flooding.

Yesterday beachfront homes and shops were flooded by crashing swells from a king tide that surged over Maraetai Drive road which was closed to the public. The front area of the local Umupuia marae was flooded but the wharenui and wharekarakia weren't affected.

“My major concern was for my whānau, for our land and the roads that have been closed.”

On a sad note for bridge bombers, the Maraetai Beach wharf will be closed for weeks until repairs are carried out, as parts of the steps floated way.

Te Kāea was given access to see the extent of the debris and damage to the closed road. Trees were ripped away from the side bank, beach benches and a section of the wharf now on land.

Chief Fire Officer Shane Rutherford told Te Kāea, “The residents are starting to clean up the places, the cafes are starting to clean up. Councils got a lot of work to do. Most of the beach front, the wharf itself needs a lot of work done on it.”

A big community clean up got underway today. The road will be re-opened once cleared by the Auckland Council in the next few weeks.