16 Mar 2020

Limited rain expected as tropical cyclone moves north

5:50 pm on 16 March 2020

A tropical cyclone will help bring much needed rain to Northland tomorrow, but not enough to relieve drought conditions there.

NIWA is forecasting Tropical Cyclone Gretel to brush the north-east of the North Island with rainfall and strong winds.

But meteorologist Ben Noll said it would have little impact, producing about 5 to 10 millimetres of rain, and none of that will reach other parts of the North Island.

The government last week declared a drought in the entire North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands.

"Unfortunately, drought takes a long time to be alleviated, so we need several rain events to do that at this point."

Noll said Gretel was "a very close call to something that could have been beneficial, but that rainfall is expected to be mostly offshore tomorrow".

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