MetService has put a severe weather watch in place for the Coromandel Peninsula, Bay of Plenty and northern Gisborne this morning, where heavy rain is expected.
It said, "A front associated with a large low-pressure system over the Tasman Sea is forecast to move south over northern and central New Zealand during the next few days, bringing rain to many areas".
"Some heavy falls and possible thunderstorms are likely, mainly about northern parts of the North Island and also northwest Nelson."
The predictions include "the possibility of rainfall accumulations approaching warning criteria in the Coromandel Peninsula, Bay of Plenty including Rotorua, northern Gisborne, and northwest Nelson".
Residents are advised to keep up to date with the latest forecasts in case the predictions are upgraded to a full warning.
Due to the severe weather set to hit Rotorua the Christmas Parade & Festival has been postponed.
The Christmas Parade Trust is working on a tentative postponement plan for next Saturday.
At this stage, the Rotorua Sanitarium Weet-Bix Kids TRYathlon is still going ahead tomorrow morning.
In the interests of public safety Rotorua Lakes Council has decided to close a slip site on Paradise Valley Rd between Relph Rd and the Ngongotahā stream bridge for the weekend until further work can be carried out.
Traffic management is in place to direct traffic.
Relph Rd can be accessed via Clayton Rd and Paradise Valley Springs can be reached via State Highway 5.
Heavy rain watch
Area: Coromandel Peninsula
Valid: 14 hours from 9:00 am to 11:00 pm Saturday
Forecast: Periods of heavy rain, with possible thunderstorms.Rainfall
amounts may approach warning criteria.
Area: Bay of Plenty west of Whakatāne, including Rotorua
Valid: 33 hours from 9:00 am Saturday to 6:00 pm Sunday
Forecast: Periods of heavy rain, with possible thunderstorms today (
Saturday) and Sunday. Rainfall amounts may approach warning criteria.
Please note, rain should ease for a time overnight Saturday and
Area: Bay of Plenty east of Whakatāne, and Gisborne north of Tolaga
Valid: 36 hours from 9:00 am Saturday to 9:00 pm Sunday
Forecast: Periods of heavy rain, with possible thunderstorms on
Sunday. Rainfall amounts may approach warning criteria, especially
about the ranges.