NZ Historic Weather Events Catalog

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September 2013 New Zealand Storm ( 2013-09-10 )

An active front crossed New Zealand during the period 10-12 September. The front was preceded by a very strong northwest flow, with very heavy rain and thunderstorms. The very strong winds caused lots of damage, blew vehicles off roads, and brought down power lines, cutting the power supply to thousands of homes.

New Zealand

Multi HazardMulti Hazard at New Zealand
Duration:   3  days - The storm lasted from 10 to 12 September.
Comments:

Insurance ClaimInsurance claims totalled $74.5 million.

Affected LifelineThe rail lines between Dunedin and Ward (southeast of Blenheim) were closed due to extremely high winds which brought trees down over the tracks.

CommentMetService recorded more than 40,000 lightning strikes over the South Island on 10 September.

CommentMetService SEVERE WEATHER WARNING 9:58am 09-Sep-2013: Spell of severe weather forecast over much of South Island and lower North Island on Tuesday and Wednesday. Includes HEAVY RAIN AND DAMAGING NORTHWEST WINDS WARNING for: Fiordland, Westland, Nelson, Buller, Otago, Canterbury, Southland, Wairarapa, Wellington, Marlborough

CommentMetService SEVERE WEATHER WARNING 9:22am 10-Sep-2013: Spell of severe weather forecast over much of South Island on Tuesday and Wednesday, and over central and lower North Island on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Includes HEAVY RAIN AND DAMAGING NORTHWEST WINDS WARNING for: Fiordland, Westland, Nelson, Buller, Otago, Canterbury, Taranaki, Wellington, Wairarapa, Taupo, Taihape, Taumarunui, Southland, Marlborough, Hawkes Bay, Gisborne

CommentMetService SEVERE WEATHER WARNING 8:03pm 10-Sep-2013: Spell of severe weather forecast over much of South Island, and over central and lower North Island on Wednesday. Includes HEAVY RAIN AND DAMAGING NORTHWEST WINDS WARNING for: Fiordland, Westland, Nelson, Buller, Otago, Canterbury, Taranaki, Wellington, Wairarapa, Taupo, Taihape, Taumarunui, Bay Of Plenty Rotorua, Southland, Marlborough, Hawkes Bay, Gisborne. GALES AND RAIN EASING OVER SOUTHERN SOUTH ISLAND AREAS TUESDAY NIGHT.

Comment MetService SEVERE WEATHER WARNING 9:32am 11-Sep-2013. Spell of severe weather forecast for: Westland, Nelson, Buller, Canterbury, Taranaki, Wellington, Wairarapa, Taupo, Taihape, Taumarunui, Bay Of Plenty Rotorua, Marlborough, Hawkes Bay, Gisborne, Fiordland, Otago, Southland. HEAVY RAIN AND DAMAGING NORTHWEST WINDS CONTINUING FOR MANY AREAS DURING TODAY. GALES AND RAIN HAVE EASED OVER SOUTHERN SOUTH ISLAND AREAS.

Comment MetService SEVERE WEATHER WARNING 8:00pm 11-Sep-2013. Spell of severe weather forecast for: Taranaki, Wellington, Wairarapa, Taupo, Taihape, Taumarunui, Bay Of Plenty Rotorua, Hawkes Bay, Gisborne, Westland, Nelson, Buller, Canterbury, Marlborough. HEAVY RAIN AND DAMAGING NORTHWEST WINDS CONTINUE IN SOME NORTH ISLAND AREAS. GALES AND HEAVY RAIN HAVE EASED IN THE SOUTH ISLAND.

Comment MetService SEVERE WEATHER WARNING 9:02am 12-Sep-2013. Spell of severe weather forecast for: Bay Of Plenty Rotorua, Gisborne, Wairarapa, Wellington, Hawkes Bay, Taranaki, Taupo, Taihape, Taumarunui. SEVERE WEATHER NOW MOVING OVER THE UPPER NORTH ISLAND, BUT EASING LATE TODAY. WARNINGS FOR CENTRAL AND LOWER NORTH ISLAND NOW LIFTED.

Wellington

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Wairarapa
Comments:

Affected LifelineWind gusts of up to 120 km/h broke power poles and brought trees and branches down on power lines on 10 September, causing power cuts to 2500 Wairarapa homes.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Rimutaka Hill
Map Location: -41.119029 175.230172
Comments:

Physical CharacteristicWinds gusted up to 150 km/h on the Rimutaka Hill.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Masterton
Map Location: -40.964296 175.667649
Comments:

DamageStrong winds blew a truck off State Highway 2 north of Masterton. It ended up in a pine plantation, destroying 100 metres of fence and scattering freight among trees.

DamageThe trailer of another truck-and-trailer unit was blown over north of Masterton. The empty upside-down trailer stayed attached to the truck as the driver steered it off the road and through a fence into a paddock, fighting to stay upright.

DamagePolice had to stop a train preparing to leave Masterton Railway Station when part of a roof was blown onto the tracks. A broken barrier arm further down the line also had to be cleared from the tracks.

DamageA truck and campervan were blown over at Clareville, near Masterton, causing the diversion of SH2 traffic. A tree collapsed on a fire engine at Clareville.

Multi HazardMulti Hazard at Wellington City
Map Location: -41.28855 174.7768
Comments:

Comment The Fire Service was called to about 25 weather related call-outs including trampolines being blown away, powerlines arcing, and roofs lifting off.

Comment Galeforce winds dragged an anchored 20,000 gross tonnage logging ship across the harbour. A 10-metre yacht broke its moorings in Evans Bay.

Affected Lifeline Wellington motorists experienced numerous delays and road diversions, due to surface flooding and debris on the roads.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Wellington Airport
Map Location: -41.3272 174.8053
Comments:

Affected LifelineAlmost all domestic flights in and out of Wellington Airport were cancelled or diverted during the evening of September 11, as the storm front moved across central New Zealand. About 2500 passengers were affected, with more than 20 flights out of Wellington and 17 arrivals being cancelled.

Canterbury

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Canterbury
Comments:

Affected LifelinePower was cut to 40,000 homes in the Selwyn, Christchurch, Waimakariri, and Hurunui districts. About 600 homes were still without power more than a week later.

Affected LifelinePower outages and fallen trees closed several Canterbury schools.

Affected Lifeline Water supplies were reduced because of power cuts at Cust, Garrymere, West Eyreton, Summerhill, Oxford, rural Ashley, Amuri Plains, Waiau and Cheviot.

Affected Lifeline Sewer pump stations were down in parts of Kaiapoi, Woodend, Oxford, Waikuku Beach, Pines Beach, Kairaki Beach and Woodend Beach.

Damage Lightning strikes and downed powerlines caused several fires which burnt vegetation and farm buildings in the Selwyn District. Some homes were threatened by fire in West Melton, Leeston and Southbridge.

DamageMore than 800 irrigators across Canterbury were severely damaged when they were blown over by the strong winds. It was estimated that it would take several months to repair them all. This would have serious consequences for farm irrigation as well as effluent dispersal.

Physical Characteristic Fairlie recorded wind speeds of 119 km/h, Timaru and Ashburton reached 110 km/h and Lyttelton about 75 km/h.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Christchurch
Map Location: -43.531120 172.636147
Comments:

Damage Many trees were blown over by the strong winds. Several houses were damaged when trees fell on to them. Fallen trees also blocked many roads.

Damage The winds lifted the roof of a wing of the Southern Cross Hospital.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Leeston
Map Location: -43.763049 172.284554
Comments:

Damage A Leeston family found themselves homeless after the caravan they were living was blown over. The caravan landed upside down, crushing the roof. Most of the family’s belongings were destroyed.

Multi HazardMulti Hazard at Ashley Forest
Map Location: -43.763049 172.284554
Comments:

DamageLightning strikes caused several fires; The largest fire was in the Ashley Forest area.

Multi HazardMulti Hazard at Lewis Pass
Map Location: -42.379211 172.403162
Comments:

Affected LifelineLewis Pass was closed due to flooding.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Mt Hutt
Map Location: -43.471387 171.526568
Comments:

Physical CharacteristicStaff at Mt Hutt skifield reported winds reaching a record 251km/h.

West Coast

Heavy RainHeavy Rain at West Coast
Comments:

Affected LifelineTorrential rainfall on 10 and 11 September on the West Coast triggered flood alarms on the Grey and Hokitika rivers.

LandslideLandslide at Haast
Map Location: -43.880220 169.040221
Comments:

CasualtiesTwo tourists were killed when their campervan was hit by a slip in stormy conditions on the Haast Pass highway, and plunged off the road into the Haast River.

LightningLightning at Fox Glacier
Map Location: -43.465898 170.019730
Comments:

DamageFire crews were called to a Fox Glacier property set alight by a lightning strike.

Otago

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Otago
Comments:

Affected Lifeline Police warned motorists travelling between Oamaru and Dunedin on State Highway 1 - particularly high-sided vehicles, campervans and motorcyclists - to take extreme care or delay their travels due to severe winds battering that part of the Otago East Coast.

Affected Lifeline Powerlines, which had been blown down, caused vegetation fires in several areas, including Waimate and Glenavy.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Dunedin
Map Location: -45.879110 170.502707
Comments:

CommentA truck was blown over on Dunedin’s Northern Motorway.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Maheno
Map Location: -45.166605 170.842662
Comments:

CommentA truck was blown over at Maheno.

Southland

Snow / IceSnow / Ice at Milford Sound
Map Location: -44.673307 167.929617
Comments:

Affected Lifeline15 tourists were stranded at Milford Sound after 20 avalanches hit the Milford Rd during the storm. Avalanches affected a 12km stretch on the Milford Rd, including a section which was hit by three separate avalanches leaving a five metre deep layer of snow.

LandslideLandslide at Hollyford
Map Location: -44.759513 168.141048
Comments:

Affected LifelineThe Hollyford Rd was hit by a massive landslide, trapping tourists at Gunns Camp.

References

Insurance Council of New Zealand (www.icnz.org.nz/current/weather)
Headline: Wild weather sweeps up South Island
www.stuff.co.nz, 10 September 2013
Headline: Storms wreak havoc in Canterbury
www.stuff.co.nz, 11 September 2013
Headline: Travel chaos as storm surges
www.stuff.co.nz, 11 September 2013
Headline: Logging ship dragged across Wellington Harbour by winds
www.nzherald.co.nz, 11 September 2013
Headline: High winds continue to cause havoc
www.nzherald.co.nz, 11 September 2013
Headline: Fierce weather a 'dog's dinner, and it's not done yet'
www.nzherald.co.nz, 11 September 2013
Headline: Storm continues to blast the South Island
www.3news.co.nz, 11 September 2013.
Headline: Wildest winds since the 1970s
www.stuff.co.nz, 12 September 2013
Headline: Milford cut off by massive slip.
www.stuff.co.nz, 12 September 2013
Headline: Storm damages over 800 Canterbury irrigators
www.stuff.co.nz, 12 September 2013
Headline: Heavy rain lashes New Zealand
www.nzherald.co.nz, 12 September 2013
Headline: Storm damages over 800 Canterbury irrigators
www.stuff.co.nz, 12 September 2013
Headline: Heavy rain lashes New Zealand
www.nzherald.co.nz, 12 September 2013
Headline: Gale had quake-like impact on power network
www.stuff.co.nz The Press, 19 September 2013
Headline: In the wake of a storm.
www.stuff.co.nz, 21 September 2013
Headline: Body found in search for Canadians
www.stuff.co.nz, 21 September 2013

September 2013 New Zealand Storm ( 2013-09-10 )

An active front crossed New Zealand during the period 10-12 September. The front was preceded by a very strong northwest flow, with very heavy rain and thunderstorms. The very strong winds caused lots of damage, blew vehicles off roads, and brought down power lines, cutting the power supply to thousands of homes.

New Zealand

Multi HazardMulti Hazard at New Zealand
Duration:   3  days - The storm lasted from 10 to 12 September.
Comments:

Insurance ClaimInsurance claims totalled $74.5 million.

Affected LifelineThe rail lines between Dunedin and Ward (southeast of Blenheim) were closed due to extremely high winds which brought trees down over the tracks.

CommentMetService recorded more than 40,000 lightning strikes over the South Island on 10 September.

CommentMetService SEVERE WEATHER WARNING 9:58am 09-Sep-2013: Spell of severe weather forecast over much of South Island and lower North Island on Tuesday and Wednesday. Includes HEAVY RAIN AND DAMAGING NORTHWEST WINDS WARNING for: Fiordland, Westland, Nelson, Buller, Otago, Canterbury, Southland, Wairarapa, Wellington, Marlborough

CommentMetService SEVERE WEATHER WARNING 9:22am 10-Sep-2013: Spell of severe weather forecast over much of South Island on Tuesday and Wednesday, and over central and lower North Island on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Includes HEAVY RAIN AND DAMAGING NORTHWEST WINDS WARNING for: Fiordland, Westland, Nelson, Buller, Otago, Canterbury, Taranaki, Wellington, Wairarapa, Taupo, Taihape, Taumarunui, Southland, Marlborough, Hawkes Bay, Gisborne

CommentMetService SEVERE WEATHER WARNING 8:03pm 10-Sep-2013: Spell of severe weather forecast over much of South Island, and over central and lower North Island on Wednesday. Includes HEAVY RAIN AND DAMAGING NORTHWEST WINDS WARNING for: Fiordland, Westland, Nelson, Buller, Otago, Canterbury, Taranaki, Wellington, Wairarapa, Taupo, Taihape, Taumarunui, Bay Of Plenty Rotorua, Southland, Marlborough, Hawkes Bay, Gisborne. GALES AND RAIN EASING OVER SOUTHERN SOUTH ISLAND AREAS TUESDAY NIGHT.

Comment MetService SEVERE WEATHER WARNING 9:32am 11-Sep-2013. Spell of severe weather forecast for: Westland, Nelson, Buller, Canterbury, Taranaki, Wellington, Wairarapa, Taupo, Taihape, Taumarunui, Bay Of Plenty Rotorua, Marlborough, Hawkes Bay, Gisborne, Fiordland, Otago, Southland. HEAVY RAIN AND DAMAGING NORTHWEST WINDS CONTINUING FOR MANY AREAS DURING TODAY. GALES AND RAIN HAVE EASED OVER SOUTHERN SOUTH ISLAND AREAS.

Comment MetService SEVERE WEATHER WARNING 8:00pm 11-Sep-2013. Spell of severe weather forecast for: Taranaki, Wellington, Wairarapa, Taupo, Taihape, Taumarunui, Bay Of Plenty Rotorua, Hawkes Bay, Gisborne, Westland, Nelson, Buller, Canterbury, Marlborough. HEAVY RAIN AND DAMAGING NORTHWEST WINDS CONTINUE IN SOME NORTH ISLAND AREAS. GALES AND HEAVY RAIN HAVE EASED IN THE SOUTH ISLAND.

Comment MetService SEVERE WEATHER WARNING 9:02am 12-Sep-2013. Spell of severe weather forecast for: Bay Of Plenty Rotorua, Gisborne, Wairarapa, Wellington, Hawkes Bay, Taranaki, Taupo, Taihape, Taumarunui. SEVERE WEATHER NOW MOVING OVER THE UPPER NORTH ISLAND, BUT EASING LATE TODAY. WARNINGS FOR CENTRAL AND LOWER NORTH ISLAND NOW LIFTED.

Wellington

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Wairarapa
Comments:

Affected LifelineWind gusts of up to 120 km/h broke power poles and brought trees and branches down on power lines on 10 September, causing power cuts to 2500 Wairarapa homes.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Rimutaka Hill
Map Location: -41.119029 175.230172
Comments:

Physical CharacteristicWinds gusted up to 150 km/h on the Rimutaka Hill.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Masterton
Map Location: -40.964296 175.667649
Comments:

DamageStrong winds blew a truck off State Highway 2 north of Masterton. It ended up in a pine plantation, destroying 100 metres of fence and scattering freight among trees.

DamageThe trailer of another truck-and-trailer unit was blown over north of Masterton. The empty upside-down trailer stayed attached to the truck as the driver steered it off the road and through a fence into a paddock, fighting to stay upright.

DamagePolice had to stop a train preparing to leave Masterton Railway Station when part of a roof was blown onto the tracks. A broken barrier arm further down the line also had to be cleared from the tracks.

DamageA truck and campervan were blown over at Clareville, near Masterton, causing the diversion of SH2 traffic. A tree collapsed on a fire engine at Clareville.

Multi HazardMulti Hazard at Wellington City
Map Location: -41.28855 174.7768
Comments:

Comment The Fire Service was called to about 25 weather related call-outs including trampolines being blown away, powerlines arcing, and roofs lifting off.

Comment Galeforce winds dragged an anchored 20,000 gross tonnage logging ship across the harbour. A 10-metre yacht broke its moorings in Evans Bay.

Affected Lifeline Wellington motorists experienced numerous delays and road diversions, due to surface flooding and debris on the roads.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Wellington Airport
Map Location: -41.3272 174.8053
Comments:

Affected LifelineAlmost all domestic flights in and out of Wellington Airport were cancelled or diverted during the evening of September 11, as the storm front moved across central New Zealand. About 2500 passengers were affected, with more than 20 flights out of Wellington and 17 arrivals being cancelled.

Canterbury

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Canterbury
Comments:

Affected LifelinePower was cut to 40,000 homes in the Selwyn, Christchurch, Waimakariri, and Hurunui districts. About 600 homes were still without power more than a week later.

Affected LifelinePower outages and fallen trees closed several Canterbury schools.

Affected Lifeline Water supplies were reduced because of power cuts at Cust, Garrymere, West Eyreton, Summerhill, Oxford, rural Ashley, Amuri Plains, Waiau and Cheviot.

Affected Lifeline Sewer pump stations were down in parts of Kaiapoi, Woodend, Oxford, Waikuku Beach, Pines Beach, Kairaki Beach and Woodend Beach.

Damage Lightning strikes and downed powerlines caused several fires which burnt vegetation and farm buildings in the Selwyn District. Some homes were threatened by fire in West Melton, Leeston and Southbridge.

DamageMore than 800 irrigators across Canterbury were severely damaged when they were blown over by the strong winds. It was estimated that it would take several months to repair them all. This would have serious consequences for farm irrigation as well as effluent dispersal.

Physical Characteristic Fairlie recorded wind speeds of 119 km/h, Timaru and Ashburton reached 110 km/h and Lyttelton about 75 km/h.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Christchurch
Map Location: -43.531120 172.636147
Comments:

Damage Many trees were blown over by the strong winds. Several houses were damaged when trees fell on to them. Fallen trees also blocked many roads.

Damage The winds lifted the roof of a wing of the Southern Cross Hospital.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Leeston
Map Location: -43.763049 172.284554
Comments:

Damage A Leeston family found themselves homeless after the caravan they were living was blown over. The caravan landed upside down, crushing the roof. Most of the family’s belongings were destroyed.

Multi HazardMulti Hazard at Ashley Forest
Map Location: -43.763049 172.284554
Comments:

DamageLightning strikes caused several fires; The largest fire was in the Ashley Forest area.

Multi HazardMulti Hazard at Lewis Pass
Map Location: -42.379211 172.403162
Comments:

Affected LifelineLewis Pass was closed due to flooding.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Mt Hutt
Map Location: -43.471387 171.526568
Comments:

Physical CharacteristicStaff at Mt Hutt skifield reported winds reaching a record 251km/h.

West Coast

Heavy RainHeavy Rain at West Coast
Comments:

Affected LifelineTorrential rainfall on 10 and 11 September on the West Coast triggered flood alarms on the Grey and Hokitika rivers.

LandslideLandslide at Haast
Map Location: -43.880220 169.040221
Comments:

CasualtiesTwo tourists were killed when their campervan was hit by a slip in stormy conditions on the Haast Pass highway, and plunged off the road into the Haast River.

LightningLightning at Fox Glacier
Map Location: -43.465898 170.019730
Comments:

DamageFire crews were called to a Fox Glacier property set alight by a lightning strike.

Otago

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Otago
Comments:

Affected Lifeline Police warned motorists travelling between Oamaru and Dunedin on State Highway 1 - particularly high-sided vehicles, campervans and motorcyclists - to take extreme care or delay their travels due to severe winds battering that part of the Otago East Coast.

Affected Lifeline Powerlines, which had been blown down, caused vegetation fires in several areas, including Waimate and Glenavy.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Dunedin
Map Location: -45.879110 170.502707
Comments:

CommentA truck was blown over on Dunedin’s Northern Motorway.

High Wind GustsHigh Wind / Gust at Maheno
Map Location: -45.166605 170.842662
Comments:

CommentA truck was blown over at Maheno.

Southland

Snow / IceSnow / Ice at Milford Sound
Map Location: -44.673307 167.929617
Comments:

Affected Lifeline15 tourists were stranded at Milford Sound after 20 avalanches hit the Milford Rd during the storm. Avalanches affected a 12km stretch on the Milford Rd, including a section which was hit by three separate avalanches leaving a five metre deep layer of snow.

LandslideLandslide at Hollyford
Map Location: -44.759513 168.141048
Comments:

Affected LifelineThe Hollyford Rd was hit by a massive landslide, trapping tourists at Gunns Camp.

References

Insurance Council of New Zealand (www.icnz.org.nz/current/weather)
Headline: Wild weather sweeps up South Island
www.stuff.co.nz, 10 September 2013
Headline: Storms wreak havoc in Canterbury
www.stuff.co.nz, 11 September 2013
Headline: Travel chaos as storm surges
www.stuff.co.nz, 11 September 2013
Headline: Logging ship dragged across Wellington Harbour by winds
www.nzherald.co.nz, 11 September 2013
Headline: High winds continue to cause havoc
www.nzherald.co.nz, 11 September 2013
Headline: Fierce weather a 'dog's dinner, and it's not done yet'
www.nzherald.co.nz, 11 September 2013
Headline: Storm continues to blast the South Island
www.3news.co.nz, 11 September 2013.
Headline: Wildest winds since the 1970s
www.stuff.co.nz, 12 September 2013
Headline: Milford cut off by massive slip.
www.stuff.co.nz, 12 September 2013
Headline: Storm damages over 800 Canterbury irrigators
www.stuff.co.nz, 12 September 2013
Headline: Heavy rain lashes New Zealand
www.nzherald.co.nz, 12 September 2013
Headline: Storm damages over 800 Canterbury irrigators
www.stuff.co.nz, 12 September 2013
Headline: Heavy rain lashes New Zealand
www.nzherald.co.nz, 12 September 2013
Headline: Gale had quake-like impact on power network
www.stuff.co.nz The Press, 19 September 2013
Headline: In the wake of a storm.
www.stuff.co.nz, 21 September 2013
Headline: Body found in search for Canadians
www.stuff.co.nz, 21 September 2013