26 Jun 2012

Snow disrupts travel on South Island roads

9:45 am on 26 June 2012

Heavy snow has disrupted travel on at least two South Island highways with several trucks getting stuck overnight on Monday.

Police say five trucks became stuck on State Highway 6 at Hope Saddle, between Nelson and Murchison, and a driver reported one of the vehicles had slid down a bank.

Another truck driver was forced to turn around on the Lindis Pass on State Highway 8 in Otago because it was too dangerous to continue. That road is now closed to towing vehicles.

State Highway 94 from Te Anau To Milford Sound is closed due to snow and several other South Island roads have restricted access.

Southland escapes severe gales

Gales reached 140 km/h on Stewart Island overnight on Monday but were not as severe as expected on the mainland as a deep low forecast to cross Southland overnight tracked further south than expected.

Craig Sinclair from Emergency Management Southland told Morning Report the expected gales did not eventuate, and emergency services are waiting to see whether the snow due to follow would hit the region on Tuesday.