Conditions across the upper North Island have eased considerably today with overcast skies and showers still affecting Northland, Waikato, Coromandel and Hawkes Bay says WeatherWatch.co.nz.
However despite an easing of conditions the sub-tropical weather is still far from over with more heavy rain moving in late this afternoon and overnight. Head weather analyst Philip Duncan says eastern parts of Coromandel and Northland are most exposed with Auckland possibly in line for more rain too.
“The system is breaking up a bit but is still pulling moist, sub-tropical, air down over northern New Zealand. Conditions will improve for Gisborne, Hawkes and Bay of Plenty however heavy downpours are likely to increase again tonight further north”.
Mr Duncan says no weather warnings are in force and the predicted heavy rain will be more isolated. “There are likely to be embedded thunderstorms which may cause surface or flash flooding and possibly slips in areas that have already been saturated”.
MetService has indicated that much of northern, central and eastern parts of Northland are at high risk of thunderstorms today with a low risk of them reaching “Severe” criteria this afternoon around the Bay of Islands region.
WeatherWatch.co.nz has received a number of rainfall figures from readers. The highest so far being from the eastern Waikato town of Te Aroha where local resident Roger Clark says 178mm has fallen from this event. “For the month of January 2010 we have had 280mm, where as for the month of January 2009 we had only had 46mm and January 2008 12mm”
Mr Clark says the majority of January’s rain has fallen in the last two days from 4pm Sat to 9am this morning totalling 173mm. His readings were taken from the Fire Station in town.
Around 50mm of rain has fallen across parts of Northland today which Philip Duncan says is “healthy” but “not a drought breaker”. This rain will definitely be appreciated however it’s unlikely to be a drought breaker. From looking at current weather models this rainfall appears to be an isolated event and the following 10 days look windy and dry”.
It’s hoped some isolated parts of Northland may see at least another 50mm over the next 24 hours says Mr Duncan.