A massive downpour hit Uawa, Tokomaru Bay and Te Puia overnight.
A red warning is in place for the Gisborne district.
Roads, bridges, homes and land are damaged and power is out for many.
Orange heavy rain warnings are still in place for Bay of Plenty, Hawkes Bay and Taranaki.
RNZ reporter Tom Kitchin is in Gisborne and spoke to Māni Dunlop.