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Rough weather starts

Weather forecasters are predicting severe gales and heavy rain in much of the country today.

A deep low just to the south of the South Island prompted MetService to issue 26 severe weather warnings. 

Severe gales should affect Canterbury and Marlborough from early morning, then spread north to parts of the North Island, it said.

As of 7:30am winds were climbing towards gale force in Wellington with gusts on the exposed hill tops to 110km/h.

Gusts to 65km/h were reported in both Christchurch and the West Coast

Yesterday, a roof was still missing in South Taranaki after severe weather battered much of the country on Tuesday night.

A small tornado tore through Opunake, southwest of New Plymouth, around 7.30pm, ripping the entire roof off one house, half the roof off another and part of the roof off the Opunake Players Hall.

Opunake Volunteer Fire Brigade chief Rodney Woods told NZPA the tornado would have been incredibly strong to rip a whole roof off.

“It must have been, because we don’t even know where the roof is.

“We found a bit of iron further over town on a couple of properties, but other than that there was just a heap of Pink Batts on the road.”

Mr Woods didn’t think the roof would be found.

The tornado was part of a band of severe weather that struck much of the country on Tuesday evening and into yesterday morning.

Thunderstorms hit Invercargill to Northland, and torrential rain and hail were reported in Auckland at 2am.

Phillip Duncan, head weather analyst for, said the country was heading into the second half of the season.

“June was so settled but now is the other side of winter. It will be unsettled for the rest of July and this generally means it’s warmer.”

Mr Duncan says a cold snap is arriving this weekend however with snow possibly to low levels in the south however a heavy dump isn’t predicted at this stage.

Another low from the Tasman is predicted to warm things up again next week.



karamu49 on 22/07/2009 11:58pm

at of 11.40am today the conditions thru-out nz were:
Place Brm Wind Gust rain
Opoho 14 28 0
Lyttelton 989 2.5 1mm
Chch 992 13 0
Greymth 991 0 0
Nelson 995 15.5 11
Mana 1001 16 41 2
ham 1010 27 35 0


Jason on 22/07/2009 10:49pm

Through the main passes this morning so far, porters and aurthurs pass closed unless you have chains. Looks like the freezing levels are lower than expected so far.
Not exactly a mild day here in Canterbury like the last few days, only 10C with lots of icy looking clouds drifting from the west ( Virga type ) but no rain yet.
I am thinking snow to very low levels for much of the South Island by tonight.

Laura on 22/07/2009 10:32pm

Are we expected to get the gales? It’s a really lovely morning. Not a breath of wind. Will it make it up here? Better move the cows if it does!

Diana on 22/07/2009 10:00pm

Palmerston North is bright and bubbly this morning clear blue skies are giving away to clouds no signs of storm heading our way just yet. – how will the weekend pan out. Will this rush of the storm be over in 24 hrs.. a wait and see game begins

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