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Chance of thunderstorms Fri/Sat

The possibility of thunderstorms is in the forecast for Friday or Saturday reports but, as usual, there are no guarantees for those who want a good display.

A front will move in from the Tasman Sea as part of a low which will be associated with a storm currently affecting Victoria. had low to moderate confidence of a few isolated rumbles of thunder on Monday night and Auckland readers from Howick to Whangaparaoa reported a number of booms in the night sky.

The front predicted for this Friday night and Saturday appears, at this early stage, as though it will be slightly more active.  The regions most exposed will be those nearest to the Tasman Sea.

Confidence of isolated thunderstorms is “moderate” says with a “high chance” of localised heavy downpours along the nation’s entire west coast on Saturday.

At this stage there are no predictions of widespread thunderstorms.

The risk of thunderstorms is highest along the South Island’s West Coast starting on Friday and into the North Island’s west coast on Saturday.  The risk drops overnight Saturday.

Head weather analyst Philip Duncan says as Autumn starts to set in the chances for thunderstorms will gradually increase.  “The weather gets more chaotic in Autumn as the approaching winter cold fights with the departing summer heat.  Cold fronts from the Tasman Sea and Southern Ocean will gradually gain more strength… this is just Autumn waking up”.

Conditions and data may change in the coming 48 hours so we’ll keep you posted – at this stage it’s a fairly general forecast but by Thursday and Friday evening’s we’ll have a much clearer picture. Thunderstorms in New Zealand can be very difficult to predict until quite near the event due to chaotic nature of being surrounded by the sea.

We’ll also bring you the latest MetService thunderstorm outlooks on Friday and Saturday.


– Image / Warren Harding


Guest on 22/03/2011 10:54pm

Trying to make a decision by end of today whether we should still be camping in a tent at Kawhia for the weekend (Fri-Sun). Not sounding good and the forecast keeps swinging from good to bad and back…. your recommendations?

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