Concerns over king tide flooding in coastal areas as wild weather slams into North Island with worst yet to come

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1 NEWS

This concludes 1 NEWS NOW's live coverage, as the first storm of 2018 slams into the North Island before moving down the country. Be sure to join us again tomorrow for the latest updates.

The summer storm is set to affect much of the country over the next two days.
Source: 1 NEWS

9:35pm Auckland's popular Tamaki Drive is closed due to flooding for the second time today.

9:20pm TVNZ weather presenter Dan Corbett updates the volatile situation set to impact much of the North Island overnight as it moves south.

Warnings are in place for holiday-makers camping and travelling around the Far North and central North Island.
Source: 1 NEWS

9:05pm The wind is starting to pick up near Auckland now, with gusts exceeding 100km/h.

9:00pm Northern Fire Comms, covering Cape Reinga to Taupo, have told 1 NEWS they're having a busy night, with over 50 weather related call outs so far.

The fire spokesperson says these incidents are spread from Cape Reinga to Taupo, rather than being isolated to one area.  

8:35pm A lucky escape for a motorist as a tree toppled over and crushed their car in Otahuhu, Auckland this afternoon. The female driver of the car escaped uninjuerd. Counties Manukau Fire Area say they've had a spree of weather related calls.

A tree toppled over and crushed a car during the bad weather in Otahuhu today.

A tree toppled over and crushed a car during the bad weather in Otahuhu today.

Source: Counties Manukau Fire Area

8:00pm Some brave surfers have taken advantage of the massive swells whipped up by the storm in Whangamata this afternoon.

Heavy rain started beating down in Whangamata at 3pm this afternoon.
Source: 1 NEWS

7:50pm The crazy weather hasn't stopped Bryan Adams concert in New Plymouth going ahead, hardy souls have been seen wearing ponchos and any other wet weather gear they can get their hands on to watch the Canadian singer.

7:25pm Looks like the forecast strong winds are now starting to arrive!

7:10pm Power is still out to thousands of homes in the Auckland region with Vector confirming to 1 NEWS there are now 800 homes without power in Te Atatu.

The 1400 homes without power north of Auckland in Silverdale are expected to be re-connected by 8:30pm and the Waiheke Island outage has now been fixed.

6:55pm The Thames District Council have also issued a warning to local residents.

"With heavy rain and wind forecast for the Coromandel through this evening and early Friday, Civil Defence is advising people to stay off the roads if they can or to anyone with plans to complete their journey before nightfall."

6:35pm A warning from the Bay of Plenty Civil Defence as the weather sets in: "Farmers are being advised to move their stock to higher ground.

"Winds are picking up and could reach 120km/h in exposed places, so please tie down outdoor furniture, trampolines and other loose exterior objects, and stay off the roads if you can."

6:25pm A Fire Service spokesperson from the Far North has told 1 NEWS they have been busy this afternoon attending call outs for trees down, roofs lifting, powerlines down and two flooding calls.

As the wild weather moves south no doubt more firefighters will be in for a busy night.

6.01 pm: Coromandel civil defence controller Gary Towler has offered a safety update on weather conditions in the region:

- A large king tide will make 9.30pm tonight the most dangerous time for residents on the east coast of the North Island around the Coromandel.

- The majority of the Coromandel is now caught up in a large storm, and people are advised to stay of the roads in the region.

- There is a high risk of flooding on a handful of roads in the Coromandel between 9:30pm and 11pm tonight.

- Civil defence advises large outdoor equipment to be tied down as a safety precaution, due to the extreme winds in the Coromandel.

Watch the full Coromandel civil defence update here.

5.30pm: Vector has provided an update on current power outages across the Auckland region with 373 properties without power in Newmarket, and approximately 1400 without power in Silverdale - just north of Auckland.

A vehicle has hit a power pole in the East Auckland suburb of Maraetai, causing 420 customers to lose power.  

A fault on Vector's network on Waiheke has also caused a power outage to approximately 1100 customers.

5.23pm: Day session of tennis at Auckland's ASB Classic canceled due to poor weather. A rain refund policy will apply to ticket holders. 

5.15pm: Rain radar over the country shows the North Island blanketed in rain, with patches of heavy thunderstorms (in red) over the South Island.

4.55pm: Time-lapse vision of thunderstorms passing over the eastern hills of Upper Hutt this afternoon:

4.51pm: Campers on mass have been abandoning holiday parks across the Coromandel and Bay of Plenty today in response to severe weather warnings. 

Hundreds of people have checked out early today from Tairua Holiday Park, Pauanui Glade Holiday Park, Opoutere Coastal Camping, Beachaven Kiwi Holiday Park and Whangapoua Holiday Park, Opoutere Beach Coastal Camping and Bowentown Beach Holiday Park. 

4.20pm: Power outages reported across Auckland leave thousands without electricity. Suburbs affected include Mt Eden, Maraetai, Swanson and Waiheke Island.

Silverdale just north of Auckland is also experiencing a power outage.

3.52pm: 1 NEWS reports from Tauranga are wind is building in intensity and rain is falling steadily as the severe weather moves further down the North Island. 

TVNZ weather presenter Dan Corbett with the latest update.
Source: 1 NEWS

3.30pm: MetService has issued a Severe Thunderstorm Watch for inland areas of southern South Island. A couple of hundred lightening strikes have already been registered.

3.20pm: Satellite footage of the cloud covering responsible for the deluge over the North Island this afternoon has been released by MetService. 

3.02pm: Auckland Transport has announced buses will replace some Half Moon Bay and Gulf Harbour ferry services today due to adverse weather conditions. 

2.50pm: The start of play at Auckland's ASB Classic tennis tournament has been delayed until at least 4pm today. Scenes from the courts make it easy to see why. 

2.25pm: NIWA has issued a total rainfall forecast for all of New Zealand over the next 48 hours, up to 7pm Friday.  

2.20pm: The start of play at the ASB Classic has been delayed today with an update on whether the whole day will be scraped at 2.30pm.

1.58pm: State Highway 10 in Northland, near Whangaroa Harbour, is almost completely flooded.

1.50pm: MetService is reporting increasingly heavy rainfall across Northland with the maximum rainfall of in one hour measured at Kerikeri between 9-10am of 18.8mm.

1:35pm: Auckland's North Shore has numerous reports of flooding, with these photos of Little Shoal Bay in Birkenhead showing a large overflowing tide covering a nearby reserve.  

Little Shoal Bay in Birkenhead, on Auckland's North Shore, has flooded past the shore line and is approaching a passing road.

Source: Supplied

An overflowing tide at Little Shoal Bay in Birkenhead, on Auckland's North Shore, has flooded a nearby reserve.

Source: Facebook / Kyle Aitken

12.55pm: Camping grounds in the West Auckland region and Coromandel are being evacuated as they anticipate a "massive storm" hitting tonight.

The Piha Domain Camping Ground, on Auckland's west coast posed an evacuation notice on its Facebook page saying: "4-6 metre waves, high winds, and torrential rain means that the conditions could become dangerous for human life."

MetService has also issued a recommendation that campers in low lying areas of the upper North Island seek higher ground.

12.42pm: The Whangarei District Council has warned due to the king tide, road flooding is to be expected, including in the CBD. 

12.35pm: The Pauanui Summer Series' King of Tangi will now be held on Sunday instead of tomorrow.

12.30pm: Sol3 Mio have postponed today's Whangamata show until Friday the 5th of January, due to the threat of extreme weather. 

12.29pm: NZTA is advising travellers in Marlborough and Nelson, along the Kaikoura Coast and North Canterbury to be cautious of the severe weather due to hit later today.

The forecast rainfall totals more than 100mm over 24 hours and could have a significant impact on SH1 through Kaikoura and the Inland Road via Waiau, said NZTA Journey Manager Tresca Forrester.

Earlier

Heavy rain has started to fall in the Far North and is expected to spread over the North Island as bad weather starts to lash the country.

Heavy rain has started falling in the Far North this morning.

Heavy rain has started falling in the Far North this morning.

Source: MetService

According to MetService, Kaitaia has had 7.6mm of rain in the last hour and the rain is expected to head south spreading to eastern areas of the North Island later today.

Motorists are being advised to plan ahead today as heavy rain is forecast anytime from late this morning to midnight tonight.

MetService are warning the heavy rain could cause surface flooding, poor visibility and general havoc on the roads.

A day of heavy rainfall has caused widespread flooding and road closures.

Source: 1 NEWS

Severe Weather Warnings

Heavy rain warnings have be issued for Northland, Auckland, Coromandel Peninsula, Bay of Plenty, Rotorua, Mount Taranaki, Nelson, and Marlborough.

The heavy rain is not expected hit the eastern and southern regions until this afternoon and this evening, but could last until tomorrow morning.

MetService is warning rain accumilations could reach up to 160mm in the Kaikoura ranges by midnight Friday.

Strong wind warnings are also in place for Northland and Auckland from this afternoon. 

And for the Coromandel Peninsula, Waikato, Waitomo, Taumarunui, Bay of Plenty, Rotorua, Taupo and Taranaki from 9pm tonight.

Northeasterlies are expected to become severe gusting up to 120km/h in exposed places.

South Island weather outlook 

Those in the south won't be exempt from bad weather either as a severe thunderstorm watch is in place for Canterbury High Country, North Otago, Central Otago, Southern Lakes, Dunedin, Clutha and Southland. 

Canterbury is under a Heavy Rain Watch, with the bulk of the rain expected on Friday.

The rain in these regions could also cause flash flooding especially in low-lying areas such as streams, rivers or narrow valleys, and may also lead to slips. 

NZ Transport Agency is advising travellers in Marlborough and Nelson, along the Kaikoura Coast and North Canterbury to be cautious of the severe weather due to hit later today.

The forecast rainfall totals more than 100mm over 24 hours and could have a significant impact on SH1 through Kaikoura and the Inland Road via Waiau, said NZTA Journey Manager Tresca Forrester. 

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