Bad weather set to hit the lower North Island - take care on the roads


UPDATE 2:40 PM: Winds have eased and State Highway 2 Remutaka Hill is now open to all traffic.

A truck, tipped over by strong winds near the summit, has been recovered and removed.

A strong wind watch remains in force for Wellington and Wairarapa and drivers must continue to drive with caution on SH2 Remutaka Hill and other exposed areas.

NZTA/Waka Kotahi and the Wellington Transport Alliance want to thank drivers for their patience and understanding during today’s closure.

We appreciate the closure caused delays and disruption for road users, but it the danger posed by the high winds meant it was necessary to ensure people were kept safe.

Update 4 March, 12:30pm

High winds have seen State Highway 2 Remutaka Hill closed to all traffic. The highway is currently closed between the Kaitoke and Featherston gates.

Drivers must avoid the area, delay their travel, or take an alternative route.

Road crews and emergency services are also attending a truck roll over near the Remutaka Hill Summit. This incident was reported shortly before midday. A recovery operation is being organised.

Drivers can check the highway’s status on the NZTA Waka Kotahi website. With bad weather affecting the wider Wellington region, drivers take extra care on the roads and check road and weather conditions before travelling.

3 March

Drivers in the lower North Island will need to take extra care on the roads tomorrow (Monday 4 March), with bad weather forecast for the region.

The MetService has issued a Strong Wind Watch for Wellington and southern Wairarapa, a Heavy Rain Warning for the Tararua Ranges, and a Heavy Swell Warning for the Kāpiti/Porirua Coast. 

With northwest winds predicted to approach severe gales, drivers must take special care on exposed routes such as SH2 Remutaka Hill and the Wainui Saddle on SH1 Transmission Gully. This especially applies to motorcyclists, trucks, vans, and towing vehicles.

With the potential for heavy swells to affect the coast near State Highway 59 between Pukerua Bay and Paekākāriki, road users on this route should also be prepared for hazards.

The bad weather is likely to affect afternoon peak travel times. Urban commuters should drive accordingly. Drive to the conditions, increase your following distances, avoid sudden braking, and use your headlights if visibility is poor.

Bad weather can cause roads to close at short notice. Drivers should check the weather and road conditions before they travel.