So, Wellington is currently the recipient of a whole lot of bad-ass weather and you may have received an email with an alarming list of all the damage the storm has done, like this:

Public access to the Basin Reserve has been closed. Approximately 15 windows in the RA Vance Stand have blown out.
Fulton Hogan working on Airport roof which is lifting Council Parks staff have closed off the walking tracks on Tinakori Hill due to the danger caused by many falling trees. Power poles are in danger of toppling on the seafront at Lyall Bay.

Slips! Buses and trains closed! Power outages! Pretty bad, huh?

Except it’s not. Find out the truth after the jump!

That list is a weird email hoax, based on an actual storm report from 2004. The council have sent out a denial along with a general “don’t panic” message.


1.30PM – 7 October 2008

Bogus storm-damage report – please ignore

A bogus storm-damage report is circulating today on email groups around Wellington – containing information from a storm in August 2004.

Advice from Wellington City Council is to ignore the email – a copy of which is attached below.

The email contains extensive lists of streets closed by slips around Wellington, reports of damage at Wellington Airport, details of extensive delays to trains and buses, school closures, and ‘huge seas’ blocking Moa Point Road.

The City Council has received a number of calls from people anxious about the emailed report – headed WELLINGTON WEATHER WARNINGS – however we stress that the information is entirely incorrect.

While there have been strong northerly winds in the Wellington region today, and heavy rain – none of the incidents on the email being circulated have occurred. They all occurred during a fierce southerly storm in August 2004.

The City Council will attempt to find out how and why the email was initially circulated – but in the meantime our advice is please ignore it.

For further details please contact:

Richard MacLean – Wellington City Council Communications, tel 04 801 3578 or 021 227 8180.

But best of all, Metservice says the outlook is “Rain clearing. Blustery northwesterlies easing.”

Photo from PhillipC‘s Flickr photostream, appropriately enough of a storm two years ago.