Severe Weather alert for New Zealand

21 Jul 2017

Two storm systems are forecast to bring heavy rainfall, snow, strong winds, and rough waters to New Zealand through July 22. A storm front is bringing heavy rainfall and strong winds to parts of New Zealand's North Island the evening of July 20. As much as 110 mm (4.3 inches) of rain is forecast overnight July 20-21 in central and northeastern North Island; the highest rainfall accumulations are projected to occur in northeastern districts. Strong winds reaching 120 kph (75 mph) are likely in Bay of Plenty and Gisborne, though strong gusts could occur in other areas of northeast North Island. Gales of up to 100 kph (62 mph) are forecast for the Auckland area. Winds have reported downed some trees and are blowing unsecured debris. As of 1900 July 20, power outages had been reported in Pyes Pa and Pukehina. Additional outages are possible until conditions begin to improve later July 21. 

A low-pressure system is predicted to move eastward across central New Zealand July 21-22, intensifying weather across South Island, especially eastern districts. Heavy rainfall is likely to affect much of the island; however, the heaviest downpours are forecast to occur in Canterbury and eastern Otago, including Dunedin. As much as 200 mm (7.8 inches) of rainfall are projected to occur through early July 22 in these areas. Snow is likely in higher elevations, with authorities warning that accumulations could occur above 800 meters (2,625 feet) in Canterbury and 600 meters (1,970 feet) in Otago July 21. Strong winds will also impact the region; gales are expected in Wellington and Wairarapa through the afternoon of July 21 and Marlborough, Canterbury, Otago, Fiordland, and Westland through late July 21. High waves are likely on the Canterbury and Otago coasts through July 22. 

Strong winds and heavy snowfall could cause blizzard conditions, especially in mountainous areas of South Island. Authorities could close mountain passes in Otago, Marlborough, and Canterbury districts. Snow and rainfall and falling temperatures could lead to icy road conditions, particularly during overnight hours July 21-22. Heavy rainfall in eastern South Island could lead to flooding, particularly near rivers and creeks. Flash-flooding is also possible in urban areas that experience sustained downpours. Strong winds could down trees and powerlines, triggering electricity disruptions and exacerbating potential ground transport disruptions. Strong winds and/or heavy rainfall could cause flight disruptions at several airports, including those serving Auckland (AKL) through early July 21 and Christchurch (CHC) and Wellington (WLG) through early July 22; however, the greatest risk of flight disruptions is at smaller, regional facilities. Powerful winds and rough seas may also temporarily disrupt cargo handling at ports, particularly on eastern South Island. 

If you require assistance, please contact Campus Travel or Chubb Insurance Assistance.

Campus Travel

Number: +61 7 3393 8855 (calls from overseas)

Number: 1300 662 703 (calls from within Australia)

Chubb Insurance Assistance

Chubb Assistance phone +61 2 8907 5995 and quote UQ policy number 01PP529201. Reverse phone charge is available.