A tornado hit parts of west Auckland around midday today. Three construction workers were killed when concrete panels fell on top of them. Seven other construction workers were injured. Roofs lifted off houses in the strong wind and trees fell on top of houses. About 270 people who could not stay in their damaged homes moved to an emergency shelter.
Roads were closed because of fallen trees. Power lines were down in many places. Flights in and out of Auckland airport have been delayed or cancelled.
Another smaller tornado hit Rotorua mid afternoon. The weather in the upper part of the North Island was frightening. There was heavy rain and strong winds. It was difficult for people outdoors to stay on their feet. Many were blown over in the wind. It was also frightening for drivers.
Listen to May 3rd 2011 to hear about another tornado last year.
• tornado – sudden wind twister. See May 3rd 2011 for more about a tornado.
• construction – building; they were building a new school
• concrete panels – large rectangles of concrete for a wall
• shelter – a building where people could stay safely
• delayed – many hours late
• blown – past participle of blow
• blown over – the wind made people fall on the ground