Early reports indicate no significant damage from Cyclone Pam throughout the region overnight but the Bay of Plenty Civil Defence Group Emergency Coordination Centre says it will continue to monitor the situation.
Only 10mm of rain was recorded at the Tauranga Airport overnight but there was still a chance of strong winds of up to 120km/hr from about 8am to midday today.
Tauranga fire senior station officer Len Sabin said fire fighters spent all day Sunday preparing for the cyclone but had no call outs or incidents overnight.
Cyclone Pam was reclassified to an intense extra tropical cyclone at 4am today and was anticipated to be at its closest to the East Cape around midday today.
"It is then likely to continue moving east-southeast and lie just northeast of the Chatham Islands at midday Tuesday. The severe weather warning remains in place," the warning said.
Winds were expected to develop this morning east of Whakatane.
"Reclassification does not mean that "Pam" no longer poses any threat. Extremely strong wind gusts, heavy rain and phenomenal waves are still expected," the announcement said.
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