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Significant Heavy Rain Expected For The West Of The South Island

MetService is focusing on a significant rain event which is expected to impact western parts of the South Island during the next few days. Severe weather forecasters have already issued Orange Heavy Rain Warnings for parts of Westland and Fiordland with Heavy Rain Watches also in place for Southland and the headwaters of the Canterbury Rivers and Lakes.

MetService meteorologist Andy Best comments, “An active front approaches the South Island from the Tasman Sea today and then moves slowly northwards across the lower South Island on Friday. The front becomes slow-moving over central and northern parts of the South Island on Saturday and Sunday, delivering heavy rain to western and southern parts of the South Island. There is a risk of significant heavy falls, possibly bringing large impacts, for Westland, and as such people are advised to stay up to date with the latest Warnings and Watches in case any changes are made, or further areas are added.”

Be aware that heavy rain may cause streams and rivers to rise rapidly. Surface flooding and slips are also possible and driving conditions may be hazardous. These are particularly important for people travelling around the impacted areas.

In contrast, the North Island is in for a generally settled weekend, albeit cloudy.

On Saturday, as the front moves up the South Island a burst of cold air is expected to pour over the southern half of the island east of the Main Divide it will be a noticeably cooler day from Ashburton down to Wanaka. For example, we expect Ashburton to reach a maximum temperature of 24C on Friday but only 14C on Saturday. These maximum temperatures are around six degrees below average for November. However, this cold snap is only a brief shock to the system, as daytime temperatures on Sunday recover quickly to close to average values (high teens to low 20’s).

Sunday night sees relatively warm temperatures as air originating from the tropics is pulled southwards over places from Gisborne down to Blenheim these warm nights are expected to persist through at least Monday and Tuesday.

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