Cyclone Hola: When it will hit New Zealand

Cyclone Hola is now forecast to hit Category 5 on Friday, bringing it into the worst possible category of cyclones.

"Sustained winds by Friday evening could be as high as 240km/h with gusts to 300km/h. This will likely be out at sea just north of New Caledonia," weather forecasting site Weather Watch says.

MetService and the Fiji Meteorological Service both say it's likely Cyclone Hola will be upgraded from its current Category 4.

"Current forecast tracks indicate the system will move westwards across Malakula, Vanuatu over the coming days, before recurving late Thursday - early Friday and heading southeastwards towards New Zealand waters," MetService says.

"Some of the models are indicating that it could pass by the upper North Island late Sunday into Monday. The position and timing of the recurve will determine the final track."

Video shows the eye moving over Vanuatu, bringing with it devastating winds, heavy rains and rough seas.

It's not known exactly when Hola will be unleashed on New Zealand. Fortunately, weather forecasting site Weather Watch says it will likely weaken before hitting us.

"Late this week Hola is likely to track south and into less favourable conditions, allowing it weaken some as it drops towards the New Zealand area," it says.

Cyclone Hola's predicted path.
Cyclone Hola's predicted path. Photo credit: JTWC

"It's still quite uncertain where Hola will track in the New Zealand area though - we will need until Friday to be able to be more specific about this."

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