Wintry, wet weekend for Canterbury and northern parts of the South Island/Te Wai Pounamu


Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency and MetService warn weekend drivers in Canterbury, Banks Peninsula and Westland to be aware that heavy rain and snow warnings are in place Saturday into Sunday.

Heavy rain watches and road snowfall warnings

There is a heavy rain watch in place north of Cheviot in Canterbury into Marlborough, along the Kaikōura Coast. There may be sea swells along the coast, potentially affecting SH1 north of Kaikōura.

There is also heavy rain forecast south of Cheviot back into central and south Canterbury and Banks Peninsula (SH75), the route to Akaroa.

“Please take care and be aware there could be slips which may close lanes temporarily given the drenched state of some hillsides and the already exposed slip-faces from previous events,” says Steve Rusbatch, Waka Kotahi Contract Maintenance Manager for North Canterbury. “Crews are monitoring the network and are ready to respond as quickly as possible.”

Snow on the passes – South Canterbury and the West Coast passes

There are also road snowfall warnings in place for Lewis, Burkes, Arthur’s and Porters Passes – state highways 7, 8 and 73 from Saturday into Sunday and restrictions are again likely. Please check your route before you leave and prepare accordingly.

Overnight/earlier today

The Arthur’s Pass SH73 route between Canterbury and the West Coast had a “chains required” condition overnight Thursday from Springfield to Castle Hill with no towing vehicles. That was uplifted earlier today.

Strong winds earlier today caused treefalls in Marlborough with a short closure on SH6 near Pelorus.

The MetService has a strong wind watch in place for Marlborough, Nelson/Tasman, Buller, and Westland north of Hokitika. It is in effect until the early hours of tomorrow morning.

High winds bring highway hazards

Video: Staying safe and being well prepared ahead of a winter trip

Before you head out check these sites for updates:

The MetService map earlier today