Your web browser (Internet Explorer) is out of date. Some things will not look right and things might not work properly. Please download an up-to-date and free browser from here.

Thunderstorms erupt over Waikato, but little relief for others

Thunderstorms are currently erupting across the Waikato region as humid, warm, weather conditions move across the area.

The Lightning Tracker at has clocked up almost 250 lightning strikes in the last 60 minutes mainly across Waikato. 

Heavy rain is also falling across central parts of the North Island and our Blenheim WeatherWatch reporter Anna Richards says rain is now falling across Marlborough.

But despite the promises of rain yesterday parched Northland and Auckland missed out on solid rainfalls as the rain band broke apart as it hit land late last night. 

Head weather analyst Philip Duncan says it’s a frustrating side to weather forecasting.  “Those in Auckland and Northland have experienced this frustrating weather scenario a few times over the past 12 months, when rain or thunderstorms move in directly from the north west the land can cause them to literally ‘snap apart’ “.

“We see the heavy rain moving down each coast but very little making it in to land, then quite often the systems regenerate over the waters of Auckland and the Hauraki Gulf giving parts of Waikato or Coromandel a soaking”.

Mr Duncan says with rain bands moving in from the west today there’s a better chance of heavier downpours.  “We recognised yesterday afternoon that the chance of thunderstorms had shifted from Wednesday to Thursday and today we stand by that forecast.  Not only is there significant thunder activity over Waikato this morning but we also expect isolated thunderstorms or heavy showers to move in from the west affecting Taranaki, Auckland and Northland later this morning and into the afternoon”.

MetService has placed almost all of New Zealand under a thunderstorm risk today, a very rare sight as unstable conditions move in behind the cold front.  At highest risk are Auckland, Waikato, Northland, Coromandel Peninsula and north western Bay of Plenty, including Tauranga.


Adrian on 21/01/2010 6:35am

I believe this would have been the heavist downpour in a short period of time in Hamilton for over a decade. Recorded around 20mm in less than 10 minutes or so. Plenty of surface flooding this morning around 8am in the city

Debbie on 21/01/2010 4:23am

While we did experience showers today (Thurs) it was not as bad as weather forecasters had predicted. It is a little humid right now (5.20pm) but the sun is shining if only briefly with the possibility of more scattered showers tonight.

Related Articles