The NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) says both SH7 the Lewis Pass and SH73 highways are now open after being closed for the last two days by heavy snow and dozens of fallen trees.
NZTA Regional State Highways Manager Colin Knaggs says the Lewis Pass highway opened around 1.30pm and Arthurs Pass just after 3pm today. Towing vehicles are now allowed on SH73 Arthurs Pass. Anyone using these highways should carry chains, take extreme care and watch out for snow machinery working in these areas.
“It has been a huge effort by our contractors to get these passes open as soon as they have given the vast amount snow that needed to be cleared with the added complication of having clear large numbers of snow laden trees that had crashed across the road. Specialist tree removal crews were used to speed up the removal of trees lowered by Wednesday’s storm that caused widespread disruption throughout the Canterbury region.”
Colin Knaggs says the weather is looking promising over the next day or two which should help melt more snow away from these areas. Our contractors will continue tidying up and monitoring work to ensure the safety of road users.
The latest information on state highway conditions can be found at www.highwayinfo.govt.nz(external link) or free phone 0800 444449.