Boxing Day weather: Cold conditions, rain forecast across New Zealand

A severe thunderstorm warning has been issued for the Tasman District as other parts of the country are bathed in summer weather.

Hail is falling in Motueka Valley where one resident says homes have lost power as a powerful storm lashes the region.

“There’ll be huge damage to any orchard in its path.”

Unseasonably cold temperatures can be expected throughout many parts of New Zealand this weekend as southerly winds bring rain.

Temperatures are set to plummet for many.

The MetService has just issued a severe thunderstorm warning for the Tasman District. It says the thunderstorms have been detected at 3.45pm near Motueka, Ngatimoti, Riwaka and Lower Moutere.

They are moving northwest and are expected to lie near Upper Takaka at 4.45pm.

“These thunderstorms are expected to be accompanied by very heavy rain and large hail.

“Very heavy rain can cause surface and/or flash flooding about streams, gullies and urban areas, and make driving conditions extremely hazardous.

“Large hail can cause significant damage to crops, orchards, vines, glasshouses and vehicles, and make driving conditions hazardous.”

A severe thunderstorm watch remains in force for Nelson.

Meanwhile, Ashburton’s high for today is only expected to reach 13C – 8C below average for this time of year.

And it will be a winter wonderland for the South Island, as snow is forecast to fall to 1000 metres.

A low weather system over North Canterbury this morning is expected to deepen, spreading rain and strong southerly winds over coastal parts of the region.

The heaviest rainfalls are expected about Banks Peninsula. MetService has issued a weather watch for the area, which might reach a warning level.

Generally, the weather in the South Island is the opposite from the North Island, with showery weather in the south and fine conditions in the north.

However, Northland and Auckland can expect a few morning showers before breaking out into mainly fine weather.

The Coromandel Peninsula to Manawatū, including Bay of Plenty and the central high country is mainly fine, but there will be a few showers in the west.

Conditions are fine at first before showers from afternoon or evening with possible thunderstorms in Gisborne and Hawke’s Bay.

There are fine spells and a few showers for Horowhenua, Kapiti, Wellington and Wairarapa. Thunderstorms are possible this morning about Wellington and Kapiti.

Marlborough, Nelson, and Buller will have showers and fine spells. Showers will be more frequent and heavier from this afternoon.

Westland is fine before heavy showers appear inland from the afternoon.

Periods of rain will sometimes be heavy and thunderstorms are possible about the Canterbury high country this afternoon.

Otago, Southland, and Fiordland can expect scattered showers this morning before they ease in the afternoon.

On Sunday, there will be scattered rain or showers developing for most in the North Island, with cold southerlies in the south and east.

In the South Island, conditions are partly cloudy or fine for most.

Canterbury through to Marlborough can expect rain and cold southerlies. Nelson and Buller will get a few afternoon showers.

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