Thundery squalls have reorganised themselves and are moving back on to the western coast of the North Island this evening.
Head Weather Analyst Philip Duncan says heavy showers with thunder and hail and destructive squally winds are battering the coastline. “The second part of today’s system is currently making landfall. Winds are gusting to 120km/h in isolated squalls”.
Duncan says when a squall hits the winds can go from “just a few kilometres an hour to 120km/h or stronger in a matter of seconds. It’s winds like this than can lift roofs, down powerlines and bring down trees. This is dangerous weather and the public should avoid being outdoors as much as possible over the next 12 to 18 hours”.
Gale force winds are currently gusting to near 120km/h around Auckland and Northland this evening.
The latest rain radar shows a number of heavy rain bands moving in to the Taranaki region and Duncan says the Weather Watch Centre’s lightning radar shows only 50 lightning strikes this hour, down from almost 2800 an hour early this morning.
Conditions will ease considerably in the west during Saturday and the worst of the weather will shift to the east delivering showers and cold south easterlies across the weekend from Dunedin to Gisborne.
Snow is possible again on the Desert road tonight.