New Zealand ports resume operations as cyclone subsides


Major ports in New Zealand have resumed services after the country’s ports were stifled by Cyclone Gabrielle. 

On 14 February, Auckland Port started its preliminary work in preparation for resuming full operations.  

“The worst of Cyclone Gabrielle has now passed Auckland. High wind continues to be a factor this morning but will likely reduce later today. We will start limited operations today to prepare for a full restart tomorrow, 15 February.” Auckland Port commented.

The cyclone had momentarily paralysed the ports of Auckland, Tauranga, and Napier, as it ravaged across central and northern regions of New Zealand with sustained rain, wind, and waves. 

Before the cyclone had abated, approximately 2,500 people had reportedly been displaced while at least a quarter of a million people were without electricity.

Shipping lines were compelled to take precautionary measures in light of the situation.

Maersk announced that its ships have left the Port of Tauranga anchorage so it can remain at sea until it is deemed safe to return, following the cyclone.

On 15 February evening local time, the city of Wellington also suffered a 6.2 magnitude earthquake, felt by thousands of residents.

This is the second weather abnormality to have impacted key areas in New Zealand in quick succession, after Auckland and the upper North Island saw record rainfall last month which triggered flooding that killed four people.

READ: New Zealand ports stifled amid Cyclone Gabrielle

The New Zealand Meteorological Service had issued a red warning in the wake of the cyclone for the third time in the country’s history.

“This declaration will enable the government to support the affected regions, provide additional resources as they are needed, and help set the priorities across the country for the response,” said Kieran McAnulty, Minister for Emergency Management.

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