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Ben Noll says Coromandel roads could be susceptible to floods and slips this summer.

Damp summer predicted

Hauraki-Coromandel rural residents have been prompted to stock up on essentials as ex-tropical cyclones are predicted to hit the area this summer, NIWA says.
NIWA meteorologist and forecaster Ben Noll told The Profile the opportunity for these types of rainfall events was higher compared to the previous December to February period due to a strong presence of La Niña.
“At the front end of summer we’re certainly not anticipating a drought to develop here early on in the summer season, so that’s good news for the locals, and the farmers and those on water tanks,” he said.
“However, on the flip side of that, the climate driver that we have is La Nina, the oceans around New Zealand as well as off to the north in the Southwest Pacific are warmer than average.
“That can be energy fuel for low pressure systems that form to the north and kind of drop down into the northern North Island including the Coromandel Peninsula and around the Eastern Waikato.”
Mr Noll said this weather pattern had created “equal odds” for normal or above normal summer rainfall and a normal to elevated risk for ex-tropical cyclones.
He said this could make way for Coromandel roads to be susceptible to floods and slips between December and February 2023.
“It does look like a wetter season compared to last summer, what we saw last summer was dryness kind of built up during January and then persisted into the Autumn season,” he said.
“I think this year the opportunity for rainfall events will come at a higher frequency compared to the previous year like sporadic downpours that can bring heavy rain and maybe even some localised flooding.
“If you hear of one of those strong weather systems tracking in, whether it’s SH25 or wherever you may be located and you do live in a very rural place, maybe stock up on essentials in case you are cut off due to slips or floods.”
Mr Noll said despite the predicted summer rainfall, it was “unlikely” to be a colder than average summer.
“That’s been a theme going on for the last several seasons, so there’s bound to be our fair share of hot days,” he said.
“That may even come with elevated humidity as well, sort of hot sticky nights that are tough to sleep, the frequency of those might be elevated.”