With little time for the South Island's West Coast to dry
out, heavy rain and severe thunderstorms were again lashing
the region today.
Since the beginning of the year, the West Coast has been
pounded by about three or four severe weather fronts,
MetService forecaster Allister Gorman said.
Another burst of heavy thundery rain for the West Coast and
Southland prompted the MetService to issue a severe weather
Earlier today MetService was recording between 5000 and 6000
lightning strikes an hour around the West Coast.
That had decreased to 1400 this afternoon, Mr Gorman said and
as the front was moving north it was weakening.
"This one has been roaring through pretty rapidly and most
places have really only been experiencing really heavy rain
for about five or six hours," he said.
The heavy rain was expected to reach the Tararua Ranges in
the lower North Island before weakening.
In the South Island the heavy rain was expected to cause
significant spillover in the headwaters of the lakes and
rivers of Otago and Canterbury.
"Rainfall of this intensity can cause slips and local surface
flooding, and given the recent heavy rainfall events, the
public is urged to exercise caution around streams and rivers
which could rise rapidly," the MetService said.