An Otago helicopter pilot who has been helping farmers to locate and feed snow-bound stock says conditions are the worst he has seen in about 18 years.
Graeme Gale from Helicopters Otago says the snow has been up to 2 metres deep in places, covering an extensive area from the back of Mosgiel and Dunedin, up into the Maniatoto region and along the Hawkdun Range to Danseys Pass.
The company has had eight machines on the go for the past three days and has delivered about 200 people on to farms to help stranded stock.
Mr Gale says conditions have been extreme. He's seen four wool sheds completely flattened from the weight of the snow on them.
Mr Gale says flying has been very difficult and dangerous with machines icing up, very poor visibility and white out conditions.