The North Island’s stretch of hot weather is set to be interrupted by rain this week, with an active front moving over the island.

It has prompted MetService to issue a handful of weather watches and warnings, including a severe thunderstorm watch for parts of Waikato and Bay of Plenty.

MetService warned of potential localised downpours for Coromandel Peninsula, eastern Waikato, and Bay of Plenty including Rotorua and the Gisborne ranges.

The alert is in force from 3pm today until midnight, with localised downpours of 25-40mm possibly affecting parts of these areas.

“Rainfall of this intensity can cause surface and/or flash flooding, especially about low-lying areas such as streams, rivers or narrow valleys, and may also lead to slips,” MetService said.

Driving conditions will also be hazardous, with surface flooding and poor visibility in heavy rain.

Meanwhile, Waitomo, Taumarunui, Taihape and southern Taupō are under an orange heavy rain warning until 9pm tonight, with 70-90mm of rain expected.

A heavy rain watch is in place for the eastern ranges of Bay of Plenty from 8pm tonight until 8am tomorrow, while eastern Taranaki and inland Whanganui are under the watch until 2pm today.