Severe gales to lash east coast

(file)
(file)

Severe winds could lash New Zealand's east coast for the next 36 hours as a cold front moves north.

MetService is forecasting strong southerlies and wintery showers for the South Island over the morning and afternoon, with Otago, Canterbury and Marlborough affected. Winds may reach gale force in exposed eastern areas, including Clutha and Otago.

A severe weather watch has been issued for Banks Peninsula and the Kaikoura coast from this afternoon until early tomorrow morning, Wellington and Wairarapa from this evening to mid-morning tomorrow and Hawkes Bay from early morning until tomorrow afternoon.

Locals are advised to check the weather forecast before heading outdoors.

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