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Where were the thunderstorms?

The skies over northern New Zealand were mostly quiet last night despite a thunderstorm watch by MetService that included the risk of severe thunderstorms and tornadoes. 

So, what is the different between a thunderstorm WATCH and a thunderstorm WARNING?  

MetService has just introduced a new Severe Thunderstorm Warning Service.

It’s to help better track thunderstorms and give New Zealanders appropriate alerts to thunderstorms and potential tornadoes.

So while only believed there was a ‘slight risk’ for thunderstorms in Auckland in our forecast, we still needed to mention the severe weather watch from MetService – alerting the public that basically we have all the right ingredients for something a bit rougher…and judging by the lightning tracker yesterday evening I’m not surprised a watch was issued.  There were well over 2000 strikes out to sea by yesterday afternoon.

Incidently, WeatherWatch believes there’s a higher risk for thunderstorms in Auckland from Saturday PM to Sunday AM.

You’ll find all the details on this new thunderstorm warning service here.


Matt on 2/07/2009 10:27pm

Do you expect any of the thunderstorms you believe will have a higher chance in Auckland in the Saturday PM to Sunday AM to be severe?


WW Forecast Team on 2/07/2009 11:36pm

Hi Matt,

We’re unsure at this early stage if they’ll be severe – but I’ll point out that our weather data was picking thunderstorms for Saturday back on Monday.  So the data is certainly pointing to unstable air.

Will have a better idea tomorrow when the system is closer.



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