A severe water shortage on Waiheke Island has prompted a spate of thefts from residential tanks.
People living and holidaying on the island rely on rain water or water delivered by tanks.
Residents have to book the water deliveries in advance, but one of the tanks is out of order and the other three suppliers are booked up until the end of February.
Local board chairperon, Paul Walden said some residents had resorted to draining other people's tanks.
"The police will be dealing with those accordingly but in the meantime those families unfortunately are stuck, in that they can't get water, so that's not desirable."
He said police had been informed, but in the meantime it means people who had ordered water in time will go without.
Police have confirmed they're aware of one water theft incident.
Steve Malcolm, who owns one of the supply tanks, WaiWater, said people were arriving to the island with no water because the property manager did not check the supply.
The island's population grows from about 10,000 to 40,000 over the summer period, and visitors are being told to be frugal with their water.
Mr Walden said people could go elsewhere, such as the sea, if need be.
"Obviously there's a fairly significant adjustment when households are confined to just about only water for drinking, and having to go somewhere else to wash themselves, or to do basic dishwashing and that sort of thing."
The water shortage is expected to last about six weeks.