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Dead after a record rain in Auckland, New Zealand

Dead after a record rain in Auckland, New Zealand

Authorities say at least three people have died after torrential rains hit Auckland, New Zealand’s largest city. Police said another person is still missing. New Zealand Prime Minister Chris Hepkins flew to the city on the North Island. He said his top priority is keeping the city’s 1.6 million residents safe.

Parts of Auckland International Airport, the largest in New Zealand, were also flooded. The airport said that no international flights would take off until at least tomorrow.

Declared a state of emergency

Authorities spoke of the “wetter day” since recording began and the declaration of a state of emergency. The city government has warned that rain is likely to continue through the weekend.

Large parts of the city are under water. Police said the three dead were found independently of each other. So one of the victims was in a flooded parking garage. Another died when a landslide hit a house.

Unusual amounts of rain

In some areas of the city, 80 percent of the precipitation measured all summer fell within 15 hours, said the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA), an affiliate of the research institute. The suburbs of Comio and Albany were hit hard. Yesterday’s fire brigade was already deployed with kayaks and jet skis to rescue people from their homes.

Although individual extreme events cannot be traced directly to a specific cause, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, it is clear that extreme weather events such as floods, storms, and heat are becoming more frequent and intense as a result of the climate crisis. That means rain and storms are getting heavier, heat waves are getting hotter and droughts are getting drier.

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