Weather chaos set to calm down

Heavy rain caused flash flooding in Auckland last week.
Photo / Richard Robinson
Heavy rain caused flash flooding in Auckland last week. Photo / Richard Robinson

The weather during the second week of the school holidays looks to be more settled than the past week, which saw flash flooding and fog bring parts of the country to a standstill.

A thunderstorm last Tuesday caused widespread flash floods in Auckland city, parts of Coromandel Peninsula and Western Bay of Plenty, while heavy fog in the North Island created travel chaos as flights were cancelled around the country on Thursday and Friday.

But MetService forecaster John Law said the coming week's weather is looking pretty settled.

"As we head through the next couple of days we have an area of high pressure that's out over the Tasman Sea, that moves closer towards the country, and a lot of the time it's fairly settled, light winds, that kind of thing."

From Thursday onwards westerly winds would start to develop down the West Coast of the South Island.

There could also be some rain by the end of the week, Mr Law said.

"But generally, high pressure should dominate most of the week."

It could still be fairly cold in the south, and fog will be quite slow to clear during the day in places like Alexandra and Queenstown, he said.

It was too early to say whether the country could be disrupted by fog, similar to that seen last week.

"As we go through the week and lose the high pressure, the winds will pick up and that will help mix the atmosphere and we should find those fogs disappear."

Meanwhile, Niwa has just released its climate outlook for the next three months, which predicts a drier late winter.

Seasonal rainfall totals are expected to be below normal in areas of the east, including Hawke's Bay, Gisborne and the Wairarapa.

Combined with expected normal temperatures, this means people may start heading to the eastern beaches earlier than usual, said Niwa senior climate scientist Dr Brett Mullan.

"Late winter is still a bit early to see swimmers, but the prospect of drier weather on the way will be welcome news for many," he said.

Dr Mullan expected the worst of the unusually heavy rain, that caused chaos around the country last week, was over.

- APNZ

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