South Island Highways this morning:
* State Highway 1 between Cheviot and Seddon - CLOSED
* State Highway 7 between Waipara to Springs Junction - OPEN (Lewis Pass)
* State Highway 7a between Tekoa Range and Hanmer Springs is OPEN to light vehicles only while further assessment takes place today.
* State Highway 73 between Christchurch and the West Coast is OPEN (Porters Pass & Arthurs Pass)
Picton, Blenheim, and Nelson are all accessible from the south via State Highway 7 (Lewis Pass) but please note this will add at least three hours additional journey time.
Hundreds of aftershocks have hit overnight in Kaikoura, Canterbury and Wellington areas.
Some people have already been evacuated and more will be taken out today. The HMNZS Canterbury left Auckland's Devonport last night headed for Kaikoura where it will drop off supplies as well. The ship is due to arrive tomorrow. Some areas remain closed off because of large slips following the big 7.8 magnitude quake that struck just after midnight on Monday.
State Highway 1 is closed still from Cheviot to Seddon. Motorists are being urged to use SH7 via the Lewis Pass road to go to Nelson, Blenheim and Picton.
KiwiRail said this morning that all Wellington passenger services were running as normal after they were initially disrupted by the quake.
However, some services were cancelled this morning because of a mechanical issue, said Metlink Wellington.
State Highway 73 remains open between Christchurch and the West Coast and SH7a to Hanmer Springs is due to open by 8am today for light vehicles only, NZTA Canterbury says.
The weather is also expected to be rough in some parts of the lower North Island today; severe weather warnings and watches are in place in the Wellington, Taranaki and Wairarapa regions.
Heavy rain and gusts of up to 120km/h are expected in some parts of Wellington today.
W E L L I N G T O N
Rail passenger services are expected to return to normal in the Wellington region. Services on the Wellington network have been given clearance to return to normal Tuesday timetable:
- Johnsonville Line
- Kapiti Line
- Hutt Valley Line
- Melling Line
- Wairarapa Line will be will be running a normal Tuesday timetable but may have a reduced number of seats.
Bus diversions will be in place through central Wellington today as inspections continue on CBD buildings following the recent earthquakes and high winds overnight. Most routes will be diverted onto the waterfront quays and on to Taranaki Street as a precaution against falling debris in forecast high winds until buildings along central city streets (Courtenay Place, Manners Street, Willis Street, Featherston Street and Lambton Quay) are checked.
-Most buses travelling into the CBD will drive along Taranaki Street, Jervois Quay, Customhouse Quay and through to Whitmore Street and Wellington Railway Station.
-Services out of the CBD will go from the Wellington Railway Station, along Whitmore Street, Waterloo Quay, Jervois Quay and Taranaki Street.
-There are messages on the bus stop information screens. Temporary stops will in place at Tony's Tyre Service, Shed 11 and Frank Kitts Park on the quays.
-All stops in Manners Street, Lower Willis Streat and Lambton Quay are closed.
-Check the Metlink site www.metlink.org.nz for further details.
Wellington Civic Defence local controller Gunther Wild says: "Central Wellington will be open for business today (Tuesday 15 November) but people will need to use their commonsense and avoid areas that have been cordoned off, particularly around Featherston Street (see attached road closure map).
"Some buildings are still being assessed. Employees need to check with their employers whether their building has been inspected and deemed safe to enter, and whether they should go into work.
-There are uncertainties around which car parking buildings will be open. Car park buildings are still being assessed and it is likely some car parks will be closed today.
Wellington Civil Defence Emergency Map:
This map provides you with critical emergency information specific to your suburb, for example, where there are power outages and road closures.
- Tuesday rubbish collections will continue as normal in Wellington City.
- Wellington Central Library remains closed, as does Miramar Library, where minor damage will be fixed in the next day or so.
For more information on traffic/highways updates go to:
People can call 0800 44 44 49 for updates and the Transport Agency's website.
Social media accounts will be also updated as more information is available: http://www.nzta.govt.nz/traffic
South Island updates:
· twitter.com/NZTATotS (Top of the South)
· Canterbury West Coast Twitter updates