New Zealand weather: Summer on hold as wild conditions batter much of the country amid COVID-19 restrictions

Summer is on hold for the moment as wild weather batters much of the country amid New Zealand's COVID-19 restrictions.

Areas of the North Island are taking a hammering with more than 100mm of rain expected to fall around regions such as Hawke's Bay and Gisborne. 

MetService has also issued strong wind warnings for Taranaki and a heavy rain watch is in place for the Bay of Plenty.

NIWA principal scientist Chris Brandolino says the wild weather could cause power cuts and flooding.

"Rivers will go up - especially the smaller rivers - [it's] really an elevated threat for urban flooding," he told The AM Show. "These are things we have to watch out for."

WeatherWatch says while there's brief calm in locked down Aukland, in COVID-19 alert level 3 restrictions, strong southerly winds, and low humidity will follow.

The city is likely to get showers and battered by winds on Tuesday morning, before becoming fine on Wednesday.

"Once we get this active weather out of the way - over the next 24 to 36 hours or so - we are going to see a big old fat high-pressure overhead and that will dominate our weather, probably for several days," Brandolino said. 

That high pressure will bring warm temperatures for much of the country later this month, including the South Island. In COVID-19 alert level 2, temperatures are cooler in the south on Tuesday before warming up on Wednesday.

"It looks like we'll find very warm temperatures and generally settled weather for much of the country as we end February and start to get into March," said Brandolino.