Avoid the peak today


The NZ Transport Agency is urging Wellingtonians to consider alternatives to their usual morning commute this morning, and to avoid driving during peak hour.

Transport Agency Regional Performance Manager Mark Owen says that while all highways are now fully open, this should not be seen as an invitation for 'business as usual' commuting habits, as the suspension of train services until at least this afternooon is likely to result in further congestion.

“The best way to steer clear of congestion is to plan around it. This means working from home, travelling outside of peak times. and avoiding nonessential travel.

“If people stick to their usual commute, they run the risk of getting stuck in traffic jams, because there will be more cars on the road. Trains carry thousands of commuters a day, and that's a lot of extra traffic if even a fraction of them get into their cars during peak hour.

“We’re urging employers to be as flexible as possible to enable Wellington to keep moving.”

Mr Owen says it is vital motorists take care out there.

"Conditions are still potentially hazardous, ad we urge drivers to keep their wits about them, drop their speeds, extend their following distances, and drive to the conditions."

He says crews worked through the night on a massive cleanup effort. Mr Owen says contractors deserve a big pat on the back for their heroic efforts in almost unheard of conditions. He also thanked Police for their support throughout the day.

Mr Owen says here may be further work required to restore damaged or flooded areas, so lane closures and roadworks can be expected later today.

He says the first thing motorists should do before making travel decisions is to check the Metservice website(external link), and check traffic conditions online at www.nzta.govt.nz(external link)www.tfw.govt.nz(external link), or on the @nztawgtn twitter feed.

More rain is forecast today and it is important people prepare well in advance for any travel plans.

Mr Owen says the Agency is incredibly grateful for the patience and understanding of the public after yesterday’s disruption.