There are problems for Wellington commuters this morning after wild weather hit the city overnight.

Trains on some of the Hutt Valley Line between Upper Hutt and the city are suspended.

They're being replaced by buses between Petone and Wellington after balustrades along the waterfront were damaged.

All Melling train services are cancelled because of the bad weather.


And a Wellington commuter train has hit a tree between Wellington and Johnsonville this morning.

Metlink Wellington says the 5.32am service between Wellington and Johnsonville is currently suspended between Awarua St and Simla Cres.

Marine Drive had to be closed for a time last night after winds whipped up big waves that dumped logs and debris on the road.

Power was cut to hundreds of homes and a flight from Auckland had to make a u-turn.

Taranaki was also hit with heavy rain that caused land slips and flooded houses.

A severe gale warning had been issued for Auckland overnight.

Central fire services spokeswoman Belinda Beets said there had been multiple landslips along SH3 in Taranaki on Sunday night and one house had partially collapsed in Hawera from the heavy rain.

Fire services responded to a steady stream of weather-related callouts, including powerlines down and cars getting stuck in floodwaters, Beets said.

"Drivers can't see the water on the road at night. On State Highway 3 a car has hit the water and aquaplaned off into the ditch. We've managed to get them out and taken the vehicle back to the fire station so it's locked up for the owner," she said.

Another person had reported their car was trapped in floodwaters but fire services could not locate them so they were presumed to have escaped on their own.

Four or five trampoline-related callouts had also come in, she said.

Jase Toi, 27, was being dropped off home in Eastbourne when the wild weather hit the coast earlier this evening.

As wild weather hits Wellington, police have urged motorists to take extra care. Video/Jason Toi

"We had parked up at Petone and we knew it might be a rough ride home because it was picking up then.

"We got past Port Rd heading into Eastbourne and there were waves flying over the road, and debris - tree stumps and rocks all over the place on the road. We didn't see any airborne but it was still a little bit scary."

They parked their vehicle in a side street to wait the storm out and then tried again.

"As we got further along there was a lot of debris and flooding - we were scared we were going to aquaplane," he said.

Their 4WD managed to make it through the floodwaters, but with water up to 70cm deep several smaller cars had to turn around, he said.

Days Bay Eastbourne at 2055hrs.. Rd now closed from Point Howard to Ferry Rd...Days Bay. Dogs loved the walk

Posted by Chris Andrews on Sunday, 30 April 2017

The wind and rain have now died down in Eastbourne but it's "still pretty ferocious" in some parts of Wellington, Toi said.

Power cuts affected more than 1300 households in Lower Hutt but electricity has now been restored. A further 44 homes are without power in Hawera. Strong winds have also forced a flight to turn back to Auckland.

MetService meteorologist Brian Mercer said wave buoys in the Cook Strait were measuring waves around 4m high due to a very strong southerly blast hitting the area.

He said the wind was at its peak around 9.30pm and would be expected to ease in three to four hours.

Winds of 60km/hr and gusts of 95km/hr had been measured in Kilbirnie, while an exposed station in Mt Kaukau had measured 120km/hr gusts.

At the airport mean speeds were hitting 65-70km/hr with gusts of 100km/hr.

The southerly wind was combining with the outgoing high tide and a strong swell to cause waves that were overwhelming Marine Drive, which is only 1-2m above sea level, Mercer said.

"When you have the wind blowing a while, it blows the waves and they develop a swell which develops its own momentum so it doesn't need the wind to keep it going."

By the time people went to work in the morning the southerly would still be strong but "nothing like it is at the moment", he said.

The storm is moving up the country and has also hit Taranaki, causing multiple weather-related callouts. One privately-owned rental house in Hawera had partially collapsed with water leaking through a wall, Central Fire Communications shift manager Belinda Beets said.

"There's a lot of rain which has caused a crack in the wall in the front of the house." Fire services had left the job in the hands of property manager Harcourts, she said.

"We're already getting in Taranaki a number of slips along State Highway 3 which we're trying to secure," she said.

Mercer said the winds would ease in Taranaki in the early hours of Monday morning as the low tracks further north.

It will cross the North Island just south of Auckland, bringing strong southwesterlies to the city. The MetService has issued a severe gale warning for exposed parts of Auckland, Mercer said.

The gales would likely arrive overnight and early Monday morning, but commuters would still be buffeted by strong winds on their way to work, he said.

Rainfalls would occasionally be heavy but not to warning levels, he said.