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Rain and wind warnings in place for Gisborne and Wellington

The lower North Island is the next spot in the firing line as the weekend’s wild weather moves south along the country’s coastlines. 

An umbrella in the rain. Source: istock.com

A deep low-pressure system is travelling over the country, bringing strong southeasterlies and downpours throughout the day.

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There’s a heavy rain watch and strong wind warning in place for Wellington until tonight, with southerly winds expected to get up to 120km/h. 

Warnings are also in place for Wairarapa for most of the day too. 

A heavy rain warning has also been put in place for part of Gisborne and Wairoa District's hills into tomorrow. 

Heavy rain may cause streams and rivers to rise rapidly. Surface flooding and slips are also possible and driving conditions may be hazardous, according to MetService.

There is also one in place for the coast of Kaikoura and its ranges. 

A strong wind watch is also in place for northern Marlborough, part of the Bay of Plenty, Taranaki and Whanganui, with varying winds expected to approach severe gale. 

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Multiple roads have been closed due to flooding and rising water levels. Source: Breakfast

Rising water levels have forced the Waihenga River Bridge along State Highway 53 to close this morning, as NZTA warns motorists to expect delays. 

Those heading between Featherston and Martinborough should expect to add up to 50 minutes to their morning commute while travelling on alternate routes. 

The low-pressure system is also bringing a dumping of rain to some eastern regions. It will be particularly heavy around Kaikōura, with a further 100-150mm of rain forecast on top of what’s already fallen. 

Peaking early this morning, the wet weather is meant to tail off throughout the day as the heavy rain warning ends at 6pm.