Dramatic weather is continuing to unfold tonight thanks to a sub-tropical depression in the Tasman Sea. Thousands of lightning strikes have been recorded today with another 83 strikes in the past hour over the North Island. Head weather analyst at the Radio Network, Philip Duncan, says with plenty of tropical air still streaming down over the nation condtions will be volatile tonight and through Wednesday. “We are still seeing torrential rain in parts of Tauranga, the Kaimai Ranges and inland Bay of Plenty this evening as moist air flows down from near Fiji. We have concerns about river and stream levels across Bay of Plenty and East Cape tonight as the northern rain radar still shows plenty of heavy rain and isolated thunderstorms moving into the area”.
Duncan says Taranaki, Nelson and even north Canterbury are also seeing heavy bands of rain tonight.
“Tomorrow [Wednesday] this low will break into 3 parts creating several fronts that will move over northern regions such as Northland, Auckland, Waikato, Coromandel and Bay of Plenty. Due to the moist humid conditions we are again expecting severe thunderstorms over some of these regions”.
“If you see lightning or hear thunder, the best advice is to get indoors immediately. Overseas research shows that lightning kills more people than tornadoes or hurricanes”.
“Due to the heavy rain today TRN’s Weather Watch Centre is warning that there’s a high possibility of flash flooding and surface flooding across these regions, in localised downpours tomorrow”.
Crown forecasters have also issued severe thunderstorm warnings for Auckland and Bay of Plenty tomorrow.