Canterbury deluge 'heaviest in NZ'

CREATIVE: A Lincoln New World shopper makes good use of a supermarket bag to help escape the deluge.
CREATIVE: A Lincoln New World shopper makes good use of a supermarket bag to help escape the deluge.

New Brighton has been hit by flooding following today's heavy rain and high tides.

Water rose around the seaside suburb, with some people becoming concerned as the water neared their houses.

A city council spokeswoman said the flooding was "now under control".

"Contractors have been out there and said it is receding. The tides are on the way out and the water has eased. There are no further concerns."

Metservice weather forecaster Ian Gall said the rain had been falling at a rate of four to five millimetres an hour from late morning and was likely to continue at that rate until the mid afternoon.

Canterbury was currently having the heaviest rainfall in the country, said Gall.

Auckland had its "hammering" yesterday though it was still showery across the western side of the North Island, including Auckland.

The bad weather has seen parts of Tai Tapu and Lincoln lose power after trees fell on power lines.

Orion's website confirmed the power had gone out on Lincoln-Tai Tapu Rd at about 2pm but it hoped to have the power back up and running by 3pm.

Gall said the rain was expected to turn to showers in the evening and become fine between 6pm and 10pm. 

"We're expecting it to tail off quite considerably later this afternoon."

Temperatures were likely to fall to a chilly 7 or 8 degrees Celsius today, Gall said. 

However, the weather was set to improve in time for Saturday's Wine & Food Festival in Hagley Park North and the Christmas carols in Latimer Square. 

The day would begin with cool temperatures but the cold south-westerlies were expected to die away in the afternoon. 

Sunday was likely to be fine, with a north-east breeze developing.

Blue Skies Weather forecaster Tony Trewinnard said the rain should clear overnight.

"The heaviest rain is probably falling at the moment.

"It's good for the region to get a burst of rain today. It looks like another fairly dry week coming up next week."

Trewinnard said temperatures should pick up "a few degrees" on Sunday.

The Press