Warning as holiday traffic jams Auckland's roads

Traffic snarls on Auckland's Harbour Bridge last month. Photo / Jason Dorday
Traffic snarls on Auckland's Harbour Bridge last month. Photo / Jason Dorday

Traffic is backing up on Auckland's main roads as travellers head in and out of the city.

Police said there were long queues from the Puhoi tunnels through to Wellsford and advised drivers to use SH16 to avoid lengthy delays.

The New Zealand Transport Agency also advised motorists that congestion was building in major highway hotspots as the weekend shaped up to be one of the one of the busiest of the past 12 months.

National Travel Information Manager Luigi Cappel said if people had to travel, it was important they planned ahead for significant delays and remained patient.

"We always get an influx of traffic heading back home after New Year's celebrations, and we ask that people leave plenty of time up their sleeve, be considerate to other road users, and understand that other motorists are in the same boat.

"We know people are eager to get home, but it's important that drivers take breaks, keep safe following distances, and stay hydrated as it will be a hot day to be stuck in traffic. If you don't have to travel in the heat of the day, the best times will be after 7pm."

There was very heavy traffic heading in both directions between Wellsford and Auckland on SH1 with the worst peaks northbound expected to be between 12pm and 4pm and extremely heavy traffic southbound to Auckland between 1 and 3pm today.

Heavy traffic in both directions on SH2 is also expected this afternoon, particularly where the Coromandel traffic joins with traffic to and from the Bay of Plenty.

Te Kauwhata and Huntly are predicted to be a clogged up as well.

Passing lanes have been closed on SH1 Otaki in both directions to help ease congestion for people going to and from Wellington.

NZTA said traffic in the South Island was free of hold ups so far.

However, there is some good news for Auckland motorists.

NZTA confirmed the Auckland Harbour Bridge would be reopened to full capacity on Monday morning, three days ahead of schedule.

However, there is some good news for Auckland motorists.

NZTA confirmed the Auckland Harbour Bridge would be reopened to full capacity on Monday morning, three days ahead of schedule.

Auckland-Northland highways manager Brett Gliddon says the bridge will be back to full operation with the reopening of the two northbound clip-on lanes, as well as the Curran Street on-ramp and Stafford Road off-ramp, after resurfacing which began on Boxing Day.

- NZME.

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