Warning of heavy showers today

CHRIS HYDE
Last updated 12:00 04/03/2014

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Manawatu and its surrounding regions are the places in New Zealand least likely have a wet autumn this year, but do not put away the umbrellas just yet.

MetService meteorologist John Law said there was the possibility of heavy showers this afternoon, with sporadic showers also likely tomorrow and Thursday.

"It's definitely taken a turn, after that dry spell in late February. Now it feels like autumn outside."

The overnight low on Sunday night in Palmerston North was just 3 degrees Celsius and Mr Law said maximum temperatures would remain cold for this time of year, at or below 20C, for most of the week.

"There will be a cold southerly hanging around and that air will make it feel colder than it is."

Things would begin to clear on Thursday, with the weekend's weather looking positive if not spectacularly sunny at this stage, Mr Law said.

Niwa's climate outlook for autumn, released yesterday, shows there is likely to be more dry weather on the horizon.

Least likely in New Zealand to get above-average rainfall are the central North Island, Taranaki, Manawatu and Wellington, which have been given only a 15 per cent chance, with a 45 per cent chance it will be near average.

River levels in the region are a 50 per cent chance of running below normal, and soil moisture is also a 50 per cent chance of being below normal.

Temperatures are most likely to be normal for autumn, with Niwa rating that option a 45 per cent chance.

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- Manawatu Standard

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