Hurricane force winds have roared through some parts of the country this morning with severe gales in the lower North Island causing the most amount of problems.
The low tightened more than models suggested yesterday - that has spared northern regions from the full fury but has instead pushed more wind into central areas.
WeatherWatch.co.nz says reports of significant damage to trees, roofs and powerlines are coming in from South Taranaki and Wanganui especially.
Reports from Nelson to WeatherWatch.co.nz are also commenting on snow, which fell overnight on the ranges just 48 hours since summer officially ended.
The centre of the low is now tracking over the Tararua Ranges / Dannevirke area and towards southern Hawkes Bay. Within the next few hours it will then move off the east coast and out over the Pacific.
With the centre of the low over land at the moment it's possible it may start weakening for a few hours - however once the low crosses over into the Pacific Ocean, just east of Hawkes Bay, it is likely to strengthen again - firing in a very strong southerly flow across the North Island.
This strengthening wind flow - which will be a mixture of sou'westers, southerlies and south easterlies - should then extend across much of New Zealand this afternoon.
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