Wild weather across Te Waipounamu/the South Island, SH6 closed north of Makarora


Torrential rain making its way up the South Island has closed SH6 north of Makarora in Otago with a flooded creek overtopping the highway. The route will remain closed today and overnight.

Muddy Creek, near the Blue Pools, overflowed onto the highway bringing earth and plants with it earlier this morning, says Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency. The road was closed around 10 am.

sludge over a highway road

The slip which has closed SH6 north of Makarora, in Otago before 10 am today.

“SH6 between Makarora in Otago and Haast on the West Coast will remain closed today and overnight,” says Waka Kotahi Otago and Southland Journey Manager Nicole Felts. “We will provide an update around 5pm tonight. Please check our traffic map before you set off and the MetService’s weather warnings.”

Elsewhere on the network – surface flooding in Southland

On other parts of the southern road network, particularly in Southland, people need to be aware of surface flooding and slow down approaching bends, she says. 

Motorists should reduce their speed and be prepared to stop in case of wind-blown debris, downed trees or powerlines.

Windy, with a fire on the Canterbury side

Aoraki/ Mt Cook in South Canterbury is currently not accessible from Lake Pukaki/SH8 with a major scrub fire near Pukaki Downs closing the intersection of SH80 and SH8, at the base of Lake Pukaki. SH80 was closed around 8 pm Wednesday night.

Journey Planner: SH80 Lake Pukaki at the intersection with SH8 live updates(external link)

West Coast and Canterbury blowing in the wind

Strong winds are battering SH73 between Kumara Junction and Otira on the West Coast. People driving high-sided vehicles like campervans, anyone towing a caravan, boat or trailer and motorcyclists need to be aware that gusts of wind can destabilise them fast, says Miss Felts.

The strong winds which fed yesterday’s fires in South Canterbury are continuing today. Motorists should reduce their speed and be prepared to stop in case of wind-blown debris, downed trees or powerlines or for visibility issues.

Milford Sound/Piopiotahi access – closed all day Thursday and overnight into Friday

SH94 into Milford Sound/ Piopiotahi is closed today due to a high avalanche risk associated with the torrential rain. The next update is Friday at 1.30 pm.

Journey Planner: Otago highway conditions(external link)

Journey Planner: Country-wide traffic/ highway updates and advice(external link)

MetService forecasts(external link)