Tornado repair bill $13m and rising

MICHELLE ROBINSON
Last updated 11:55 10/12/2012
Tornado aftermath
PETER MEECHAM/Fairfax NZ Zoom
Red Cross workers prepare to meet residents affected by the tornado.
Auckland tornado
Fairfax NZ Zoom
A fire rescue crew at a building site near Walingford Way in Hobsonville.

Tornado smashes Auckland

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The repair bill for tornado-hit west Auckland jumps to $13 million and is expected to rise further. 

There are 22 houses up for demolition; 18 in Whenuapai and four in Hobsonville.

A total of 339 homes were damaged by Thursday afternoon's tornado, Auckland Civil Defence controller Clive Manley said.

At least 32 people remain displaced and stayed in motels last night. A similar number are expected to be put up again tonight.

"That number is expected to decrease as people's homes get sorted out," Manley said.

"Huge progress has been made since Friday and we've had a good response from people affected, but some houses will take a really long time to repair."

Some homeowners based overseas had just returned to sort out the damage, he said.

Power was returned to the worst affected street, Clark Rd, on Saturday, but 30 properties will remain disconnected until they are made safe.

Many people had returned to their homes anyway to begin repairs.

The worst-hit houses belonged to the Defence Force and were boarded up ready for demolition.

A "fair number" of commercial properties were also working to repair damage, Manley said.

Cordons around the worst-hit areas were lifted on Saturday to allow people back into their homes, but it also encouraged onlookers.

A temporary cordon was put back up and security stepped up after a man posing as a contractor was found to be looting.

Another complaint was made, but not confirmed, Manley said.

"One is still too many."

The cost of the clean-up - which increased after early estimates of $11m - will be covered by various organisations and insurance including local and central government.

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