Strong winds in Canterbury could cause damage

01:35, Oct 24 2012

Gale-force winds expected this afternoon could cause damage and make driving difficult, forecasters say.

MetService issued a strong-winds warning for the region, saying northwest winds were forecast to reach 130kmh in exposed places around the South Island between 4pm today and 8am tomorrow.

The winds were expected to ease tomorrow as the front crosses over the area.

MetService warned that winds of that strength had the potential to damage power lines and loose structures and make driving difficult.

Weather forecaster Philippa Murdoch said the winds could pick up to 50kmh to 80kmh in Christchurch and would see the temperature reach about 18 degrees Celsius today.

Blue Skies Weather forecaster Tony Trewinnard said the winds were because of a strong westerly wind flow south of New Zealand.

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He expected the brunt of the winds would hit Southland and Otago.

A cold front is expected to move on to the lower South Island tonight.

Murdoch said the front would bring a few showers around Banks Peninsula, but the coast and inland should remain dry.

The Press