The North Island is to be hammered by severe gales over the next 24 hours.

The MetService has issued a severe weather watch covering most of the island as well as the top and bottom of the South Island.

The forecaster says there will be severe westerly gales from Auckland south and heavy rain in the Tararua and Ruahine Ranges.

The latest bout of bad weather was part of a front that would move rapidly across the country today bringing rain to western areas and westerly gales across much of the North Island.


It's gon' get windy! Metservice have issued a severe weather watch for most of the north island - with severe gales and...

Posted by Civil Defence Waikato on Monday, 18 July 2016

A second front would cross the country tomorrow, bringing southwest gales to parts of Nelson, Otago and Southland.

Today's strong winds were predicted to last from late afternoon until tonight in the lower half of the North Island but would not drop until tomorrow morning in the upper half.

The heavy rain was expected after lunch and would clear tonight.

The MetService advised people stay up-to-date with weather forecasts.