Forecasters hope to have a better understanding today about whether Tropical Cyclone Oma will crash into New Zealand later this week.

The question remains: will it hit New Zealand or will it swoop past and wreak havoc on Australia instead?

Weatherwatch this morning said it still remained unclear if the cyclone would directly hit the country but rain was on its way regardless.

The world's two most trusted weather services when it came to predicting cycloes, Global Forecast System and ECMWF, still disagreed on whether it would track towards New Zealand this weekend or do a u-turn back into the tropics, Weatherwatch said.


But both models were picking a new low to form around New Zealand regardless of Oma's precise tracking meaning there would be rain for bothe islands - but where exactly and how much was unclear. There remained the possibility most of the rain would fall at sea around New Zealand, Weatherwatch said.

MetService meteorologist Mark Bowe said forecasters were awaiting the latest prediction models for the path of the cyclone.

The cyclone was located west of Malekula, Vanuatu where it has reported to have lead to flooding and damage.

Waves encroach into a coastal village of Pelong on the island of Maskelyne, Vanuatu as Cyclone Oma hits the region. Photo / Red Cross Vanuatu
Waves encroach into a coastal village of Pelong on the island of Maskelyne, Vanuatu as Cyclone Oma hits the region. Photo / Red Cross Vanuatu

The Vanuatu Red Cross Society reported that gardens in North West Malakula have been destroyed by the wind and the villagers of Cao Island could not travel by boat to the mainland due to rough seas.

The low-lying village of Pelong on Maskelyne Island was flooded as waves were whipped up by Oma.

Emergency Services and aid agencies are on alert as more details emerge of the effects of Cyclone Oma.

"Tropical Cyclone Oma should move southwest away from Vanuatu over the next couple of days, and may reintensify into a category 3 system as it moves past New Caledonia."

"It should continue to move south-southwest during Wednesday and Thursday, to lie over the southern Coral Sea by the end of Thursday."


Most model outlooks showed the system would recurve towards the southeast on Friday.

Today's forecast showed a moist northwest flow covering the southern South Island this morning, bringing heavy rain to Fiordland and southern Westland.

A heavy rain warning was in place for Westland from Franz Josef southward as well as Fiordland over the next 24 hours.

"These thunderstorms will boost local rainfall rates, however heavy rain with intensities of 15 to 25mm per hour, or more, can still be expected over Fiordland with or without the thunderstorms," MetService said.

Bowe said weather for the next two days was mostly fine, with heavy rain predicted on the West Coast of the South Island in coming days.

"Today the North Island is going to be mostly fine, there may be the odd shower around Northland."

There would be some isolated afternoon showers in the country's northern-most region but the main action was rain brought on by fronts in the South Island.

"There are a couple of fronts moving onto the South Island. That means heavy rain for the west of the South Island. Eastern areas north of Ashburton should be mostly fine."

Heavy rain was also expected around the headwaters of Otago rivers and lakes, with MetService putting a heavy rain watch in place.

Tomorrow, weather in the North Island would be much the same, with the same fronts from the South Island moving further north up the country.

Looking ahead, the active front affecting the south of South Island on Tuesday was expected to weaken as it moves slowly northwards on Wednesday.

"Another front should move across the South Island from the southwest late on Thursday, then weaken over central New Zealand late Friday, bringing a period of heavy rain to the west of the South Island."

Late on Friday and Saturday, a low may approach the North Island from the Tasman Sea, bringing rain to most of the Island.

There was low confidence of warning amounts of rain in northern half of the North Island from Mt Taranaki across Taupō to Bay of Plenty northwards on Saturday.

Your weather
Whangārei: Cloudy periods. Light winds.

High 27C Low 17C

Auckland: Fine, apart from some morning and evening cloud. Light winds, afternoon sea breezes.

High 26C Low 17C

Tauranga: Fine, apart from some cloud morning and evening. Light winds but afternoon sea breezes.

High 26C Low 16C

Napier: Fine. Light winds, but afternoon sea breezes.

High 27C Low 17C

Whanganui: Fine, but morning and evening cloud. Light winds, but afternoon westerlies.

High 27C Low 16C

Wellington: Fine, apart from morning and evening cloud. Northerlies, becoming strong from afternoon.

High 23C Low 17C

Christchurch: Fine with high cloud. Northerlies picking up.

High 31C Low 18C

Dunedin: High cloud, a few spots of light morning rain. A period of rain overnight as northerlies change southerly.

High 27C Low 14C