Videos of New Zealanders trying to go about their normal lives in flooded gyms, supermarkets, buses and Auckland Airport are going viral after the country’s biggest city was hit by its worst flood in modern history.
More heavy rainfall is expected in the coming days.
Auckland, New Zealand’s biggest city, has completely flooded after receiving more than 75% of its annual summer rainfall in just 15 hours.
The torrential rainfall on Friday Jan. 27 led to the worst floods in the city’s modern history and the wettest day ever recorded.
A state of emergency has been declared as bridges were washed away, houses were inundated and thousands of people were left without power.
At least four people have died and thousands have been forced to evacuate their homes.
Photos and videos on social media showed people wading through waist-deep flood waters as rain continued pouring down and items floating down flooded supermarket aisles.
Flights were delayed and canceled as Auckland Airport’s terminal and runway were also severely flooded.
200 passengers on a Qantas flight bound for Sydney were forced to spend the night in the plane after it became trapped on the runway and unable to be evacuated.
Air New Zealand has rebooked the flights of at least 7,800 people on Tuesday, according to a statement released by the airline.
New prime minister Chris Hipkins flew to Auckland on Saturday to assess the situation and called the flooding “unprecedented”.
Several beaches have been declared off limits due to contaminated water, while schools in the city have been closed until February 7.
The cleanup costs are expected to exceed $63 million, which is more than the cost of New Zealand’s West Coast flood in 2021.