Heavy rain heading for north

The north of the country is in for more of a drenching with a severe weather watch issued for a wide area of the top half of the North Island.

Heavy rain was likely to hit Northland, Auckland, Coromandel Peninsula, Bay of Plenty, Rotorua and Gisborne  tonight and tomorrow Metservice said.

"A low over the Tasman Sea will spread a very moist and unstable northerly airstream over the upper North Island during today and Sunday," it said.

"Fronts associated with this low should bring a burst of heavy thundery rain to the upper North Island."

The heaviest falls were likely in Northland this evening and early Sunday morning. The rain would hit Auckland in the morning and the Coromandel Peninsula for most of the day tomorow.

For Bay of Plenty and the northern and western ranges of Gisborne the heaviest falls were expected during Sunday and early Monday morning.