Severe gales with gusts up to 120km/h on the way for some

Wed, Mar 15
MetService weather warnings.

Severe gales with gusts up to 120km/h are on the way for Wellington and large parts of the South Island.

MetService today issued strong wind warnings for many regions, as well as heavy rain warnings for the West Coast of the South Island.

Wellington and Marlborough are under a orange strong wind warning from 1am to 9am on Friday.

"Severe northerly gales at times in exposed places, gusting 120 km/h," MetService said.

"Strong wind gusts could damage trees, powerlines and unsecured structures. Driving may be hazardous, especially for high-sided vehicles and motorcycles."

Canterbury High Country is under the same orange wind warning, with it beginning at 8pm on Thursday night and lasting until 5am on Friday morning.

Wairarapa south of Masterton and Banks Peninsula are under a yellow strong wind watch in the early hours of Friday morning up until 8am.

There are orange heavy rain warnings for most of the South Island's West Coast.

Tasman west of Motueka can expect 70 to 110mm of rain in the ranges from 9pm on Thursday to 7am on Friday.

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

Westland may see 275 to 325mm in the ranges and 60 to 100mm near the coast from 4pm on Thursday to 11pm on Friday.

Peak rainfall rates of 25 to 35mm/h are forecast with thunderstorms possible.