Hazardous driving conditions remain after storm says NZTA


Surface flooding and slips on many state highways and roads in the northern Auckland region and Northland continue to make driving hazardous and the NZ Transport Agency advises people that they should only travel if absolutely necessary.

"Although the sun has returned to many places, flood waters still persist and we do need to do more detailed inspections in some places to assess slips and other storm-related damage," says the NZTA's State Highways Manager for Auckland and Northland, Tommy Parker. "Extreme care is still needed, and if people do have to travel they should drive to the conditions and be aware of unexpected hazards ahead to ensure they reach their destinations safely."

On State Highway 1, the Dome Valley between Warkworth and Wellsford remains closed by flood waters and slips.  Northbound traffic is being diverted to SH16 from the Silverdale interchange on the Northern Motorway and at Woodcocks Road in Warkworth. Some sections of Woodcocks Road are reduced to one lane because of slips. Southbound travellers join SH16 at Wellsford. A section of SH16 at Araparera is also reduced to one lane.

In Northland, SH1 is closed by flooding near the community of Morewa north of Kawakawa, and there is extensive flooding on SH11 between Kawakawa and Paihia in the Bay of Islands. There is a slip near the summit of the Brynderwyns on SH1 and at Towai Hill on SH1 north of Whangarei. The highway remains open, but extreme care is needed.

Flooding and slips on many other routes throughout Northland mean that drivers needs to allow more time for their journeys, says Mr Parker.

"NZTA maintenance crews are working with emergency services and local councils to make all roads fully operational," says Mr Parker. "Until the clean up is complete people need to drive with patience and vigilance."