22 Dec 2012

Families leave emergency accommodation

4:14 pm on 22 December 2012

Families left stranded by the tornado that tore through west Auckland are now out of emergency accommodation and are either renting other homes or staying with friends or relatives.

Winds of up to 144 km/h wreaked havoc in Hobsonville and Whenuapai on 6 December, killing three men and destroying homes and trees.

In the aftermath 123 people were provided with emergency accommodation but all have now found other temporary housing.

Civil defence controller Clive Manley said 384 homes were hit and 90 have major damage.

Mr Manley says insurance companies are going through the claims, and although only 22 homes were deemed structurally unsafe, more will be demolished as it's often cheaper to rebuild a house than repair it.

Almost 200 Defence Force properties near the Whenuapai airforce base were destroyed in the tornado.

An Air Force spokesperson says staff have been moved to temporary or other permanent accommodation while insurers assess whether the houses can be repaired.