Wellingtonians are being urged to stay out of the water after sewage leaked into the harbour.

A water main burst near the central police station on Victoria Street this morning.

Wellington City Council spokesman Richard MacLean says unfortunately, they've had to let quite a bit of diluted sewage flow into the harbour through the storm water system, to ease pressure.

He says Frank Kitts Lagoon is the main area affected.

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MacLean says anyone entertaining the idea of a mid-winter swim is urged to reconsider, until the water is given the all clear.