26 Jul 2008

More wild weather set to hit North Island

5:55 am on 26 July 2008

MetService is warning more bad weather is due to hit the North Island on Saturday, bringing further heavy rain and strong winds.

It is predicting the storm will hit most of the North Island from about midday and last about 24 hours, with the biggest damage likely to come from heavy rain and winds blowing at more than 100 km/h.

Forecaster Peter Kreft says the wind will be strongest in Waikato, Taranaki and the King Country, while the north and east of the North Island will get most of the rain.

MetService says the bad weather will continue throughout the weekend.

Civil Defence centres in the North Island are preparing for the storm and warning people to be prepared in case of flooding or power outages.

Boaties are being told to check their moorings and stay on dry land this weekend, and police are warning drivers to go slowly in the heavy rain.

Ferry services resume

Passenger ferry services across Cook Strait are back to normal after five-metre sea swells cancelled sailings earlier on Friday.

Morning crossings were cancelled and passengers were not allowed on a sailing carrying freight from Wellington in the afternoon.

The Interislander service says many delayed travellers took the 1.45pm ferry from Picton, which helped to clear the backlog of passengers. It does not expect delays on Saturday.

Interislander and Bluebridge freight services have been operating as normal.