Auckland has copped an overnight soaking, amid warnings of heavy rain today as kids return to school.
Tāmaki Makaurau has been drenched in heavy rain overnight as an active front moves up the country from the South Island – bringing wet weather and strong winds to the city’s morning commute.
The torrential rain is not expected to let up until at least after rush hour.
The region is under a heavy rain warning and strong wind warning, with between 50mm to 80mm of rain set to accumulate until about 11am in the Auckland area including Great Barrier Island.
Peak intensities of 15mm to 20mm/h are expected and locals are told to watch for the possibility that the situation will become an “orange warning”.
Motorists are experiencing challenging levels of visibility on motorways in the predawn downpour.
Motorists urged to drive to the conditions
Strong winds and rain would arrive in Auckland and Northland this morning, the MetService said and commuters should: “Stay safe and drive to the conditions.”
The strong wind warning in Auckland – including Great Barrier Island – is not expected to lift until 11am.
“Northeast winds are forecast to rise to gale in exposed places, with gusts reaching lower warning threshold of 90 to 100km/h especially in eastern areas,” MetService said.
Fiordland has a strong wind warning as well. Severe gales are forecast in exposed parts, gusting up to 130km/h.
Northland is also forecast to get a similar deluge until about 9am, especially in the north and east. Peak intensities of between 15mm to 25mm/h are forecast and there is also a possibility of thunderstorms.
Heavy rain warnings are also in place over the Coromandel Peninsula, Bay of Plenty west of Ōpōtiki and further south in Nelson northwest of Motueka and Westland south of Otirā.
South Island bracing for more flooding
Parts of the South Island are bracing for more flooding, with heavy rain due across much of New Zealand overnight and today.
While the rain will not be as heavy as last weekend’s deluge, forecasters are warning areas that are already waterlogged are in the firing line again.
MetService has heavy rain warnings in place for parts of Nelson and Westland, where up to 150mm of rain could accumulate about the ranges. The warnings are in place until this evening.
Streams and rivers could rise rapidly and surface flooding and slips are possible, the warnings say.
Strong or severe gales are also expected before the rain arrives.
Niwa is forecasting “extremely high river flows” in response to the forecast heavy rain over the top of the South Island and is warning people to never drive through floodwaters.
MetService meteorologist Dan Corrigan said most of the country would be affected to some extent.
Heavy rain is due for inland Marlborough, the Tasman district and parts of Buller, where the ground’s already saturated.
The incoming poor weather is due to an active front that would hit Fiordland and the West Coast before moving up over the top of the South Island overnight, Corrigan said.
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