The end of the rain is in sight

April 6, 2017

Since the beginning of the week, historic amounts of rain have fallen across much of the country. Whakatane recorded more than two months’ worth of rain over a two day period, the third-highest 2-day total since records began in 1974, and major flooding and slips have occurred across the North Island and upper South Island. Rivers may continue to rise today as rain which fell in the ranges moves downstream through river systems.

The Low responsible for all this rain has now moved into waters east of Canterbury, and its final act will be to bring rain and strong winds to parts of Canterbury and the Kaikoura Coast. “The Low is going to hang around today, driving rain and strong winds into the east coast of the South Island,” said MetService Meteorologist Jon Tunster. “Parts of Banks Peninsula have already had gusts over 130 km/h – and winds are not expected to ease significantly till tonight,” he added.

Persistent rain should affect areas north of Timaru until tonight, when the system finally starts to drift away to the east. Its parting blow will be a heavy southerly swell, affecting coastal areas from Canterbury all the way up to Gisborne until the end of Friday.

The weather completely changes on the weekend as a broad, slow-moving High moves onto the country. “This High should bring light winds and dry conditions almost everywhere on the weekend,” said Tunster. “Humidity over the upper North Island will also be greatly reduced compared with earlier this week,” he added.

Official Severe Weather Watches and Warnings are reviewed and re-issued by MetService at least every twelve hours, and more often if necessary. To get the most up to date information on severe weather around the country, or any other forecasts, see or on mobile devices at You can also follow our updates on MetService TV, at MetService New Zealand on Facebook@metservice  and @MetServiceWARN on Twitter and at

MetService issues Warnings, Watches and Outlooks for severe weather over New Zealand.

Warnings are about taking action when severe weather is imminent or is occurring. They are issued only when required.
Recommendation: ACT 

Watches are about being alert when severe weather is possible, but not sufficiently imminent or certain for a Warning to be issued. They are issued only when required.
Recommendation: BE READY 

Outlooks are about looking ahead, providing advance information on possible future Watches and/or Warnings. They are issued routinely once or twice a day.
Recommendation: PLAN 

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