ModerateApril 2001 North Island Ex-tropical Cyclone Sose ( 2001-04-12 )
  • Download as PDF
  • Download as XML

Ex-tropical Cyclone Sose brought high winds, heavy rain, high seas and flooding to many parts of the North Island. Three people were killed in a weather-related car accident in the Waikato and one man was drowned in a river in the Bay of Plenty. A number of injuries also occurred.

New Zealand

Multi HazardMulti Hazard at New Zealand

Duration:   3  days - From the 12th to the 14th of April.

CommentThe MetService issued a Heavy Rain Warning for Northland on the 12th. A marine gale warning was also in force for Northland.

CauseA depression, the remains of Tropical Cyclone Sose, moved southwards to lie west of Northland on the night of the 12th. The humid, moisture-laden air associated with Cyclone Sose combined with the strong upward motion preceding the Tasman Sea depressions, bringing heavy rain over northern districts. The low was replaced by a ridge of high pressure on the 14th.

North Island

Multi HazardMulti Hazard at North Island

ImpactThe Fire Service Northern Region had a busy night on the 12th with storm-related call-outs.

ImpactThere were numerous car accidents in northern districts.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust

Affected LifelineTrees blew down across roads.

Affected LifelinePower and telephone poles and lines were damaged by falling trees.


Affected LifelineSurface flooding occurred in some parts of the North Island on the night of the 12th.

Maritime / CoastalMaritime / Coastal

ImpactThe annual Easter Auckland-Tauranga yacht race was called off on the 13th due to concerns over high winds and seas for the Cape Colville to Tauranga leg.

Physical CharacteristicThere were sea swells of 3.5 m and a 30-knot (56-km/hr) southerly.


Multi HazardMulti Hazard at Northland

CommentWeather forecast for Northland on the 11th: "Tonight: Cloudy. Scattered rain developing with some heavy falls. Northeast winds, rising to 45 km/h in exposed places. Tomorrow: Rain becoming widespread, some heavy falls. Northeast winds rising to 65 km/h gusting 90 in exposed places. Friday: Rain with some further heavy falls at first, easing to showers. Gale northwesterlies easing slowly. Saturday: Showers gradually clearing. Winds tneding southwest and dying out later. Sunday: Fine, apart from cloudy periods. Light winds."


CommentThunderstorms were accompanied by spectacular lightning.

Heavy RainHeavy Rain

Physical CharacteristicNorthland received about 100 mm (10.0 cm) of rain overnight on the 12th and 13th.

Physical CharacteristicThe heaviest rain was recorded on the eastern hills area between Whangarei and Kerikeri, where 28 mm (2.8 cm) fell per hour at times on the afternoon and night of the 12th.


CommentMinor flooding occurred in Northland on the night of the 12th and early morning of the 13th.

ImpactOn the 13th, extensive surface flooding covered roads and farmland in many areas from Whangarei to north of the Bay of Islands and Whangaroa.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust

DamageTrees were brought down in some places.

Heavy RainHeavy Rain at Glenbervie

Physical CharacteristicGlenbervie recorded 229.5 mm (23.0 cm) of rain from midnight on the 12th to 7am on the 13th.

Physical CharacteristicGlenbervie Hills recorded 105 mm (10.5 cm) of rain in the three hours from 2pm to 5pm on the 12th.

Heavy RainHeavy Rain at Glenbervie Forest

Physical CharacteristicNgunguru/Glenbervie recorded 207 mm (20.7 cm) of rain in the 24 hours to midnight on the 12th. Most of the rain fell between noon and midnight on the 12th.

Heavy RainHeavy Rain at Kaeo

CommentKaeo experienced heavy rain on the 12th.

Physical CharacteristicKaeo recorded 200 mm (20.0 cm) of rain in 18 hours.


Affected LifelineFlood waters swirled across the main street through the township on the night of the 12th.

ImpactWater entered several shops and flooded the new shop in the BP service station.

Affected LifelineExtensive surface flooding from the Kaeo River blocked State Highway 10 to the north at the Kaeo River bridge and cut off Kaeo Hospital (on Omaunu Road) from the town. The highway was impassable to all but 4-wheel drive vehicles and buses from the early hours of the 12th until later in the day. The incoming high tide had combined with flood waters.

Physical CharacteristicThe Kaeo BP shop and service station had about 5 cm of water through it around 4am on the 12th.

Heavy RainHeavy Rain at Kerikeri

Physical CharacteristicKerikeri recorded 168 mm (16.8 cm) of rain from midnight on the 12th to 7am on the 13th.

Physical CharacteristicThe area west of Kerikeri received 161 mm (16.1 cm) of rain.


CommentKemp House was threatened by the rising, swollen Kerikeri River.

Heavy RainHeavy Rain at Ohaeawai

Physical CharacteristicOhaeawai received 122 mm (12.2 cm) of rain.

Heavy RainHeavy Rain at Oruru

Physical CharacteristicOruru Valley received 100 mm (10.0 cm) of rain.

Heavy RainHeavy Rain at Puhipuhi

Physical CharacteristicPuhipuhi recorded 128 mm (12.8 cm) of rain in the three hours from 2pm to 5pm on the 12th.

FloodingFlooding at Rangiahua

Affected LifelineState Highway 1 near the Horeke turnoff at Rangiahua was blocked.

Multi HazardMulti Hazard at Whangarei

CommentWeather forecast for Whangarei on the 11th: "Tonight: Cloudy with rain developing. Northwesterlies strengthening. Tomorrow: Rain. Northeast rising 50 km/h. Friday: Rain easing. Strong northwest winds. Saturday: Showers clearing. Southwesterlies."


ImpactA house near Whangarei was flooded.


Multi HazardMulti Hazard at Auckland

Affected LifelineRain and strong winds hampered Easter holiday-makers leaving Auckland on the night of the 12th.

Heavy RainHeavy Rain

ImpactHeavy rain overnight on the 12th caused the North Shore City Council to erect pollution warning signs for bathers at the beaches of St Leonards, Mairangi Bay, Milford and Rothesay Bay.

Maritime / CoastalMaritime / Coastal at Murray Bay

CommentA sewer at Murray Bay was threatened by big waves, and temporary protection was erected.


Heavy RainHeavy Rain at Waikato

Physical CharacteristicThe Coromandel received 130 mm (13.0 cm) of rain overnight on the 12th.

Heavy RainHeavy Rain at Tapapa

Physical CharacteristicTapapa recorded 30 mm (3.0 cm) of rain overnight on the 12th.

Multi HazardMulti Hazard

CasualtiesThree people were killed in a head-on crash between two cars on State Highway 28 at Tapapa at 9:15am on the 13th. One of the cars was torn in two. The crash happened in greasy conditions near an easy corner on Harwoods Road, after terrible weather overnight, and a heavy fog had just lifted. Those killed were a 16-year-old boy (the driver of one car) and two women (54 and 84 years old) who were in the back seat of the other car.

InjuriesA man and his daughter also in the crash were flown to Waikato Hospital with injuries. He received some fractures and she was due to be discharged.

Affected LifelineThe road was closed for about four hours while the wreckage was cleared.

Heavy RainHeavy Rain at Whitianga

Physical CharacteristicWhitianga recorded 132 mm (13.2 cm) of rain in 24 hours.

Physical CharacteristicWhitianga recorded 26 mm (2.6 cm) of rain in one hour.

Bay of Plenty

Heavy RainHeavy Rain at Bay of Plenty

Physical CharacteristicBay of Plenty received about 100 mm (10.0 cm) of rain overnight on the 12th.

Physical CharacteristicUnstated location recorded 108 mm (10.8 cm) of rain in 24 hours on the 12th.

Physical CharacteristicUnstated location recorded 44 mm (4.4 cm) of rain in 24 hours on the 13th.

ImpactA vehicle ran off the road into the sea at Sulphur Point due to heavy rain affecting visibility.


Property DamageAn apartment block driveway's concrete retaining wall collapsed.

Affected LifelineState Highway 2 was flooded between Te Puke and Mt Maunganui's Te Maunga Junction.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust

DamageTrees were brought down.

FloodingFlooding at Kaitemako Stream

CommentKaitemako Stream was transformed into a swift-moving, muddy torrent.

DamageA $20,000 concrete steel structure was washed away by the swollen Kaitemako Stream.

FloodingFlooding at McLaren Falls

CasualtiesA 22-year-old man drowned after jumping into the flood-swollen Wairoa River at McLaren falls. His body was found in the river on the 16th.

CommentHeavy rain over the past few days had pushed rivers in the catchment to flood levels.

Heavy RainHeavy Rain at Tauranga

Physical CharacteristicTauranga recorded 40 mm (4.0 cm) of rain in one hour.

LandslideLandslide at Te Puke

Affected LifelineHeavy rain caused a landslip, which cut off the water supply from Te Puke to Maketu on the 13th. Water from Waiari Stream was unsuitable for human consumption because of the heavy rain.

FloodingFlooding at Waitao Stream

CommentWaitao Stream was transformed into a swift-moving, muddy torrent.

FloodingFlooding at Welcome Bay

ImpactA Welcome Bay feijoa farm was inundated.


Multi HazardMulti Hazard at Mount Taranaki

InjuriesTwo trampers stuck on Mt Taranaki were found on the morning of the 13th in heavy rain and strong winds. Both were suffering from hyperthermia.


High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Ohakune

InjuriesThree people were injured at Okakune when a marque collapsed in high winds at a Maori cultural festival at around 12:55am on the 13th. One of the people was admitted to hospital with neck injuries.

Physical CharacteristicWind gusts up to 80 km/hr were reported in Ohakune.


Multi HazardMulti Hazard at Cook Strait

Affected LifelineHigh seas forced the cancellation of two Cook Strait sailings of the Lynx ferry. About 1200 passengers were affected, but all were able to cross on the 13th on other ferries.


High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Oyster Bay

Affected LifelineHigh winds knocked over power poles in Oyster Bay on the 13th. Power was turned off on on the line from Oyster Bay to Robin Hood Bay on the 14th.

DamageSparks from the poles set fire to a pine forest in the Oyster Bay area, north-east of Picton, at about 7:10pm on the 13th. The fire was still raging in some areas the next morning. The fire was fanned by gale force winds overnight and high winds continuing on the 14th initially prevented helicopters from getting off the ground to help.

EvacueesSeveral homes were evacuated due to the danger of the fire.

AreaThe fire spread over 70 hectares (0.7 km²).


Headline: Man feared drowned.
The Bay of Plenty Times, 14 April 2001.
Headline: Water supplies cut after deluge.
The Bay of Plenty Times, 14 April 2001.
Environment Waikato. State of Emergency Declarations in the district since 1976.
Major weather events in New Zealand, Floods and High Rainfall, Floods to 30 Sept 2005.
Meteorological Society of New Zealand (Inc.) Newsletter 85, June 2001.
www.metservice, notable weather
Headline: Cyclone heading our way.
The Northern Advocate, 10 April 2001.
Headline: Northland weather.
The Northern Advocate, 11 April 2001.
Headline: Wet and wind on the way.
The Northern Advocate, 11 April 2001.
Headline: Sose promises Easter sting.
The Northern Advocate, 12 April 2001.
Headline: Cyclone Sose's fury only so-so for North.
The Northern Advocate, 14 April 2001.
Headline: Sose alert centres on likely deluge., 12 April 2001.
Headline: Wet weather digs in for first days of easter., 12 April 2001.
Headline: Heavy rain closes beaches., 13 April 2001.
Headline: Kaeo coping with flood., 13 April 2001.
Headline: Sose slips away as weekend weather improves., 13 April 2001.
Headline: Fire fighters battle blaze near Picton., Source: Christchurch Star, 14 April 2001.
Headline: Picton fire almost out., 14 April 2001.
Headline: Smash rips family holiday asunder., 14 April 2001.
Headline: Storm leaves clear skies in its wake., 14 April 2001.
Headline: Body of waterfall jumper recovered., 16 April 2001.