'Don't take this with a grain of salt' - West Coast mayor gives locals stern warning ahead of Cyclone Gita

Hokitika's mayor is warning those on the West Coast there are "no excuses"not to be prepared for what Cyclone Gita could possibly bring.

In a video posted on the The Coasters Club Facebook page, Mayor Bruce Smith suggested those effected by the last weather event move out of their homes as a precaution.

He urged people to stock up on their food and water supplies as well as look into alternative power.

Principal Forecaster Chris Brandolino talks through the likely impacts as the storm barrels in from the west. Source: Breakfast

With Gita expected to hit tomorrow NIWA modelling predicts high waves, strong winds

Breakfast weatherman Matty McLean has the latest weather update. Source: Breakfast

"If you've got friends or family heading to the coast in the coming days, call them and tell them not to," Mr Bruce said.

"We don't want people stuck in slips like the last event and complain about it," he said.

He says this event is not to be "taken with a grain of salt" and people need to take this seriously.

Heavy rain and winds are expected for central New Zealand on Tuesday and Wednesday. Source: Breakfast

Those who are trapped on the roads could be there for multiple days, he warned.