Cyclone Gabrielle 6 February to 14 February 2023
Cyclone Gabrielle began its journey as a tropical depression on 5 February then being named 99P on 6th February around the Solomon Islands. It continued its track SW over the next 48 hours before turning southward in the Coral Sea on 8 February, soon after to be named Tropical cyclone Gabrielle by the BoM. On 9 February the cyclone commenced tracking SE and deepening as wind shear became quite favourable. By 10 February, Gabrielle deepened further becoming a severe tropical cyclone category 3 heading towards Norfolk Island. On 11 February cirrus outflow started to be present over the upper North Island as Gabrielle hit Norfolk Island registering a pressure of 958 hPa on 12 February. By late in the day Gabrielle starting approaching NZ waters.
Cyclone Gabrielle then commenced the transition to become an extratropical cyclone over the course of the next 24 hours with a southward steering track during 13 February. The cyclone then moved SW into Great Barrier Island around 8pm and centred itself over the island between 11pm and 3am into 14 February with pressure bottoming at 965.4 hPa at Claris airport. The position meant extreme rainfall occurred on the Coromandel Peninsula, Auckland and Northland west coasts and the east coast of the North Island. It has become the deadliest and most costly storm for New Zealand of the 21st Century, with 11 fatalities , 1,720 injured and cost to rebuild houses and infrastructure set to be in the billions NZD.
Notable stats for the upper North Island from private & public sources.
Highest wind gust: 163km/h (88 knots) Channel Island
Lowest barometric air pressure 965.4 Claris airport, Great Barrier Island
Highest accumulated rainfall from 12th to 14th February
Northland- 544mm Puwera (10km south of Whangarei) Coromandel - 614mm The Pinnacles , 382mm Matarangi Auckland - 370mm Piha
Great Barrier Island 212mm (Awana Beach)