Storm strikes region

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Stormy weather and thunder filled the skies of Oamaru yesterday when the predicted bad weather hit.

Waitaki District Council emergency services manager Chris Raine said the stormy weather saw about 7mm of rain fall over a 20-minute period at one point.

In wet weather, it was common for 7mm to fall over about an hour, Mr Raine said.

At the time of writing, there were no reports of flooding in Oamaru but there had been flash flooding elsewhere, he said.

A funnel formed to the west of Weston, but it did not hit the ground, he said.

He expected up to 15mm of rain in total from the bad weather, he said.

Met Service meteorologist John Law said the storm had caused about 140 lightning strikes over a two-hour period as it moved up the country.

“It will be a mixture of fork lightning and cloud to cloud lightning,” Mr Law said.

“I think you’d probably see some impressive lightning strikes.

“It’s a good amount of thunder and lightning.”

Mr Law said weather would be better today and tomorrow.

Saturday would see “a spell of rain” but nothing heavy, he said.

Moving to Sunday and Monday, weather was likely to be fine and dry, he said.

In regards to the long-term Christmas forecast, it was too soon to be able to accurately predict what the weather would do, he said.

“There’s still a fair bit of changeability.”

Fingers are crossed we will see some good Christmas weather.

By DAVID DE LOREAN

PHOTO: JAMES FORD