Damaging winds are pummelling Wellington and much of the country's South Island.
Trees are falling and roofs lifting as severe gales associated with an intense weather bomb bears down on central New Zealand.
More than 400 households were without power for some hours but electricty has now been restored to most homes.
Vital commuter services are affected as trolley buses are taken off the road and all harbour ferry crossings cancelled. Many planes have been delayed this morning.
MetService is warning the wind will peak about 9am in the city with severe gales and gusts of up to 160 kph possible.
The gusts follow severe overnight gales throughout central New Zealand.
A Fire Service spokesman said crews had been called to clear roads in South Wairarapa and Johnsonville after trees blocked lanes.
In Wellington properties needed to have loose tiles and sheets of iron secured by firefighters.
A Korean church in Brooklyn had a tree crash on its roof.
Trolley buses have been taken off the road this morning due to the gale force winds and rush hour commuters are being told to expect disruptions.
Waves were crashing over the road on the main route to the airport.
The New Zealand Transport Authority issued a warning to motorists about the wind danger if travelling on the Desert Rd today.
Heavy rain, which caused surface flooding on several highways throughout the South Island, is expected to ease.