Snow and ice impact reducing South Island highways — midday, 5 August


Snow and ice conditions have eased up on most South Island state highways – notably Pine Hill to Waitati including the Leith Saddle north of Dunedin which has now reopened, says the NZ Transport Agency.

But the wider Dunedin area from Palmerston to Gore, is still icy and road users need to take care. “No towing vehicle” restrictions are in place on several highways.

No South Island highways are closed due to snow and ice currently. Snow has also stopped falling north of Christchurch between Waipara and the Hundalees.

Transport Agency crews gritting SH1 near Conway.

Transport Agency crews gritting SH1 near Conway in North Canterbury earlier today.

NB: Italics show changes since 9.40 am Transport Agency update.

  • State Highway 1 north of Dunedin, Pine Hill to Waitati, is now open. This includes the Leith Saddle on the northern motorway to Dunedin. Check conditions on the Metservice web camera(external link)
  • SH1 Pine Hill to Palmerston is open but closed to towing vehicles, care required.
  • SH93 Mataura to Clinton, Southland — road is now clear.
  • SH8 between Tekapo and Fairlie — chains are essential and no towing vehicles.
  • SH8 Twizel to Tekapo no restrictions, but care needed.
  • SH80 Aoraki/ Mount Cook no restrictions but care needed.
  • SH87 Middlemarch to Outram — open to all vehicles now but care is needed.
  • SH6 Makarora to Hawea has Stop/Go with rockfall warnings in place. Please travel during daylight hours through this route and build in time.
  • SH6 Ross to Haast, South Westland — a strong wind warning is in place so high-sided vehicle drivers and motorcyclists need to take care.
  • Restrictions for Porters Pass west of Springfield, SH73, central Canterbury have been lifted. Check the Traffic Table or map for updates. The other alpine highways are clear on the West Coast side of the divide.
  • North of the South Island — SH63 St Arnaud to Rainbow Skifield, SH60 Upper Takaka to Riwaka, SH6 Hope Saddle — snow and ice, care needed.

In Queenstown Lakes District, the Crown Range is open and gritted on top of packed snow so care is needed with more snow expected. Other roads in the district are open and gritted. See the Queenstown Lakes District Council website(external link) for details.

Transport Agency Journey Manager Lee Wright says drivers need to drive prepared today, ready for changes in conditions.

The MetService heavy snow warning(external link) web page.

See the NZ Transport Agency's traffic and travel page.

Call 0800 4 HIGHWAYS (0800 44 44 94).

Twitter — Otago/Southland(external link)

Twitter — Canterbury/West Coast(external link)

Facebook — NZ Transport Agency South Island(external link)