Regional Specialised Meteorological Centre

Regional Specialised Meteorological Centres (RSMC) are responsible for the distribution of information, advisories and warnings for one or more specific weather types in a defined geographical area of responsibility, as part of the World Meteorological Organization's (WMO's) World Weather Watch. The RSMC is effectively the focal point for that type of weather in the region. 

 

Under WMO's Marine Meteorology and Oceanography Programme, MetService (RSMC Wellington) has responsibility for issuing marine information, advisories and warnings for Marine MetArea XIV, which covers the South Pacific and Southern Oceans south of the Equator, from 160°E in the west to 120°W in the east and down to the ice edge, at around 55°S. 

This large area of ocean is divided into a number of 'sea areas', for which MetService prepares 'High Seas' forecasts and gale/storm warnings (click on the links to see the latest forecasts):

We delegate preparation of forecasts for the sea area north of 25°S (called sea area 'Islands') to RSMC Nadi operated by the Fiji Meteorological Service. Forecasts for sea areas in neighbouring MetAreas are prepared by other National Meteorological Services. You can find a world map of MetAreas here

New Zealand and Australia High Seas Service Alignment 

On 12 December 2017, the boundary changes between the Australian (MetArea X) and New Zealand (MetArea XIV) regions of high seas responsibility, in order to remove an overlap between the South-Eastern, Sub-Tropic and Forties areas. This is a joint initiative between MetService and the Australian Bureau of Meteorology.

You'll find more information in the video below (click on the image to play the video) or in this information flyer: Information sheet - planned boundary alignment (PDF download, 208KB)

High Seas video placeholder

 

Since November 2009 RSMC Wellington has also produced twice-daily broadscale guidance for expected severe weather over the next 5 days in the tropical southwest Pacific. This type of guidance is known as the South Pacific Guidance (SPG) charts, one of the key products of the WMO's Severe Weather Forecasting and Disaster Risk Reduction Demonstration Project (SWFDDP). You can read more about the SWFDDP here: http://blog.metservice.com/2012/12/metservice-in-the-tropics/.