16 Nov 2016

Wild weather set to return as roads remain closed

8:25 am on 16 November 2016

The miserable weather which has blighted quake-hit areas is expected to return tomorrow, with a strong southerly blast on its way.

Flooding in Lower Hutt

Flooding caused havoc in Lower Hutt yesterday. Photo: RNZ / Mava Enoka

Parts of the top of the South Island and the Wellington region experienced flooding after heavy rain yesterday.

The weather created more slips and Wellington was cut off for some hours, with roads closed and trains cancelled.

Thousands of commuters were urged to stay where they were to prevent further congestion.

Today's forecast is for drier weather, but MetService has predicted southerly gales and cooler temperatures for the east of the South Island, including Kaikoura and Wellington on Thursday.

It said the "unsettled weather" was expected to continue this week as active low pressure troughs and associated fronts crossed the country.

"On Thursday, another active low pressure system should move eastwards across the country, followed by strong southerlies about the east of New Zealand," MetService said.

"Also on Thursday and early Friday, strong cold southerlies spread northwards over New Zealand."

Roads still closed by slips and damage

Wellington's main state highways are all open this morning following yesterday's floods, but some roads remain closed and there are some disruptions to rail services.

Pipitea St has been re-closed, with only one lane open on the north-western side between Moturoa and Murphy Streets, due to falling debris.

The Haywards Hill - between Paremata and the Hutt Valley - remains shut, while one lane of Featherston Street has reopened.

Molesworth Street, between Hill Street and Hawkestone Street, is closed to traffic and pedestrians, due to the collapse danger presented by a multi-storey office building.

There are slips on two roads - Shelly Bay Road, south of the old Air Force base, and South Makara Road, south of the golf course, closing the road for up to a week.

Takarau Gorge Road, between Johnsonville and Makara Beach, is also closed by slips.

The Kapiti Line rail services have been cancelled between Porirua and Waikanae until further notice due to slips and there will be no replacement services.

Kereru Station and the Petone subway are closed because of flooding.

In the central North Island, flooding has led to the closure of State Highway 32 between Tokoroa and Whakamaru.

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