Photos: Thousands of lightning strikes hit North Island

The North Island has been struck by severe weather, thunderstorms knocking out residents' power on Friday night.

Images sent to Newshub show lightning streaking across the sky - more than 33,000 of them took place across the evening.

Lightning strikes near the Skytower.
Lightning strikes near the Skytower. Photo credit: Supplied/

"Twenty-four hours of uira, lightning, around the country. 33218 strikes!" MetService said in a tweet.

It's not over either, as more thunderstorms make their way to the North Island.

Severe thunderstorm watches are in place for Northland though to the central North Island. Forecaster MetService said in a tweet conditions on Saturday evening will be very similar to Friday.

As of 10:45am on Saturday there were three power outages in Auckland, according to lines company Vector. Two of the outages began on Friday evening.

The lightning brought rain with it too, and flash-flooding has caused chaos on New Zealand's roads. Video sent to Newshub from near Gisborne shows a road partially washed out and littered with debris.

MetService has also warned of possible localised downpours of 25-50mm/hr and wind gusts of 60-80km/h in Auckland and Northland. There's also a chance of massive hail 10-20mm in diameter.

"Driving conditions will also be hazardous with surface flooding and poor visibility in heavy rain," it said.

"Large hail can cause significant damage to crops, orchards, vines, glasshouses and vehicles, as well as make driving conditions hazardous.

"The thunderstorm activity should die away this evening."


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