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Neighbour Thomas Knight heard the sound of the tree coming down on to the house around 4:40pm and rushed out to check on his elderly neighbour, known as Ivy.
"The wind was really loud and I heard a bang and then the windows smashing," he said.
Ivy lives in a granny flat on the backyard of the house where Mr Knight lived with his grandparents on Korimako Lane.
Mr Knight said he ran up the drive to the rear property and looked in to the house. He saw that the chair Ivy was sitting on was crushed, and she was trapped.
The tree had come through the roof of the house, crushing some walls and windows.
He could see that Ivy was able to move a little, and believed she may have been able to phone for help herself.
Emergency services arrived soon after and extracted the woman from the badly damaged house.
"I saw her get taken away in the ambulance, I hope she's okay," Mr Knight said.
Ivy was taken to Kaitaia Hospital. She was believed to be uninjured.
Three other large trees on the property were felled in the winds gusting to 160 km/h yesterday, and Mr Knight said he was worried about his grandparents' 100-year-old home being damaged too.
The historic home had last night escaped any major damage - with just a small tree falling against a carport.
- By Sophie Ryan of APNZ