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Atrocious weather sets in, winds hit 172km/h in Wellington

Rough weather is continuing to build across New Zealand making for atrocious camping conditions in some regions while hurricane force winds are hitting exposed parts of Wellington.

Heavy rain is currently falling around Taranaki, Wairarapa, Wellington, Nelson, Lakes District and Southland with the heaviest falls in Taranaki and Wellington as of 11:30am.

Strong to gale force winds are also hitting a number of regions – including the more popular camp grounds in the north, reports

As exclusively predicted by yesterday winds gusting up to 70 and 80km/h are affecting some northern regions – while not damaging to infrastructure the gusts could rip tents and awnings and snap heavy branches.

Camping regions most exposed to the winds are Northland, Auckland and Coromandel Peninsula, Gisborne, Hawkes Bay and Taranaki.

But much stronger winds are blasting Wairarapa and Wellington with reporting stunning hurricane force winds are now gusting over 172km/h on Mt Kaukau in Wellington over the past two hours.  A northerly gale is hitting the city centre with gusts reaching 120km/h at the airport.

Head weather analyst Philip Duncan says these incredible winds could make the Rimutaka Ranges road unsuitable for some motorists.  “Vans, caravans, motorbikes and trucks will be worst affected by these winds across Wellington and Wairarapa.  We advise extreme caution and recommend waiting until later in the day to drive in the two regions”.

Heavy rain is also pounding the area and says the bulk of extreme weather remains across the lower North Island as we head into the afternoon.

Rain has eased in Nelson according to the latest data.



pete chch on 27/12/2010 10:49pm

water is pouring onto riverside roads along the Heathcote river in Woolston CHCH..are todays higher than normal? Its also raining..not a good combination

Guest on 27/12/2010 10:39pm

I think the heavy rain is confined to Otago and moving up the east coast…. Cool gusty SW wind in Invers with 0.2mm in the last hour and a fraction more in Queenstown and Gore. The farmers and those relying on tank water will be very happy.

WW Forecast Team on 27/12/2010 10:44pm

Correct – Invers is certainly only having lighter falls with more substantial rain in northern Southland and Lakes District.  Great news for the farmers who desperately need it!

– WW

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