Heavy rain travel warning – stay home and stay safe


Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency is urging people to avoid non-essential travel in several North Island regions, with Metservice red or orange warnings for heavy rain in place for Northland, Auckland, Coromandel, and parts of Bay of Plenty and Gisborne.

Metservice red and orange warnings(external link)

“If you don’t need to be driving in these areas, please stay home. If you need to travel in affected areas, please check the Waka Kotahi Journey Planner before you leave. This page is updated 24/7 by our traffic operations centres, and is the best source of the most recent and reliable information available on state highway closures and disruptions. Remember to refresh the page when checking the status of highways to ensure that the latest updates are displayed,” says Waka Kotahi National Emergency Response Team spokesperson Mark Owen.

Waka Kotahi Journey Planner(external link)

Mr Owen says Waka Kotahi is also asking everyone using roads in affected areas to adjust their driving to the conditions, which means slowing down, increasing following distances, switching headlights on and watching for flooding and other debris on the road.

“Slips and floodwaters are likely to disrupt travel in affected regions, making some roads impassable and others likely to close at short notice. The simple message for people is to stay put and stay safe.”

Mr Owen says with the possibility of heavy rainfall spreading further south overnight, anyone planning to travel in the next 24 hours should check the Journey Planner web page before heading out. Waka Kotahi will also issue social media updates around the clock for the duration of the storm event.

“We’re focused on keeping everyone fully informed and as safe as possible. Our people are working day and night to make that happen, and roading contractors are also working around the clock in incredibly difficult conditions to monitor the state highway network for slips, flooding and other disruptions.  Contractors will always do their best to keep roads open and minimise disruptions, but the nature of this event means that roads may need to be closed at short notice to keep people safe.”