25 Apr 2011

Roads busy as holidaymakers head home

9:58 pm on 25 April 2011

Police say main roads have been congested as people head home from the Easter holiday, but traffic is now clearing throughout the country.

Parts of State Highway 1 were gridlocked for a time on Monday.

South-bound cars which were backed up for 20km from Otaki to Levin following crashes are moving again.

A three-car crash blocked the highway completely for a time, while a four-car nose-to-tail pile-up then blocked the diversion road.

In Northland, traffic was backed up for several kilometres at Kaiwaka due to roadworks.

Traffic heading into Auckland from all directions was heavy.

State Highway 1 south of Warkworth was blocked for a time after a tree and power lines fell across the road, but has been cleared.

In the South Island, traffic in and around Christchurch was very heavy, while it was moderate to heavy around Dunedin.

The road toll stands at five on Monday night. The holiday period ends at 6am on Tuesday.

Last year, 12 people died on the roads during Easter, the highest toll since 1992.