Storm


Hamilton electrical storm "like a strobe light"

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  • STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • 17,000 lightning strikes detected in less than 6 hours
  • Storms peaked at well over 3000 strikes per hour
  • Severe thunderstorm passed right over Hamilton City.

An amazing and rare electrical storm lit up the skies above Waikato last night and around 9pm centred itself over Hamilton city.  WeatherWatch.co.nz received numerous comments about the storm with many saying they had never seen anything like it.

Many eyewitnesses described the lightning as non-stop with flashes every "1 or 2 seconds" and one from Cambridge describe it as a "strobe light".


Major electrical storm over Hamilton

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Updated: 10:30pm Weds

Read eyewitness accounts...


Wairarapa severe thunderstorm warning lifted

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All warnings lifted as of 8:28pm


Rotorua severe thunderstorm warning lifted

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All warnings have now been lifted as of 7:30pm.


South Auckland severe thunderstorm warning now lifted

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All warnings are now lifted as of 7:39pm.


Thunderstorms near Auckland, quieter elsewhere

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It's a much quieter day in the skies over the North Island with no thunderstorm warnings being issued as of 4pm.  Very little thunder activity is being detected however a band of thunderstorms and torrential rain has formed in southern parts of Auckland, mostly around Pukekohe and the Bombay hills.

The anvil clouds responsible can be clearly seen from across Auckland city.

Over Waikato similar clouds are forming and torrential downpours are appearing across mountains and ranges all over the North Island south of Auckland.


Severe thunderstorms finally ease but Wednesday is Groundhog Day

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All warnings have now been lifted following a dramatic day in the skies above the central North Island but Wednesday is shaping up to be Groundhog Day with a near identical outlook in place.

WeatherWatch.co.nz says more storms are likely from late this morning/noon across the Central North Island.

More details from 5am...

See a photo below of the thunderstorm over Taranaki yesterday afternoon.

Have photos of Tuesday's dramatic weather?  Use the simple upload link here.


Lightning strikes reach over 1500 in the past hour

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Severe thunderstorm watches were this morning issued for a number of regions across both islands and in the past hour 1569 lightning strikes have been picked up by the Lightning Tracker.

Thunderstorm Watches, which indicate severe thunderstorms are likely to develop in the coming hours, cover several regions including those affected by thunderstorms yesterday.


PHOTOS: Thunder clouds over central North Island

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Yesterdays incredible thunderstorm rattled much of the Waikato and Central Plateau regions.

Most of the severe thunderstorms occurred in remote areas however the storms did brush Reporoa, near Rotorua.  The images below were captured by photographer Trish Bailey.

Today more thunderstorms are forecast with an even larger area exposed to the unstable conditions. 

If you have photos of yesterdays thunderstorms, or if you get some from this afternoons forecast build ups - use our simple photo upload link and share them with other WeatherWatch.co.nz readers!


Thunderstorm risk even greater for today

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Warm humid conditions and sea breeze wind convergences are expected to trigger showers again over inland parts of the North Island today says MetService.

These are expected to be heavy, with a high risk of thunderstorms from inland Waikato down to Taranaki, across to inland Bay of Plenty and the ranges of Gisborne down to about Palmerston North.

WeatherWatch.co.nz says the area for thunderstorm risk is even greater than yesterday.  Head weather analyst Philip Duncan says yesterday's thunderstorms were on a scale not often seen in New Zealand.  "We don't often see such a large area affected by severe thunderstorms.  We're having a small taste of what Americans often see in the midwest".

Read more below...

See the live Lightning Tracker here.