Police are urging holiday-makers to have patience on their return home.
Poor weather conditions, a series of small vehicle crashes and normal traffic delays are causing problems for many travellers returning home after the Christmas Holidays.
The lower North Island is being drenched by a band of heavy rain moving down the country. About 150mm fell in Gisborne earlier today, while more than 80mm fell in northern Hawkes Bay.
A nose to tail on the northbound lane near Warkworth and the normal bottle neck at Wellsford on State Highway One are causing long tail backs in both directions.
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There are reports that traffic on the Desert Road is extremely heavy, caused by severe weather conditions with heavy rain and strong winds. Motorists are being advised to drive with extreme caution.
Heavy flooding has also struck the seaside township of Waimarama in the Hawkes Bay. Residents and visitors to the area are being encouraged to reconsider travel as conditions may necessitate closing the road into that area.
Heavy holiday traffic and heavy rain is causing frustrating delays for motorists.
Police are encouraging drivers to drive to the conditions and if possible use alternative routes to avoid known traffic bottlenecks.
Police say that "above all, drivers should be patient and courteous on the road".
- Herald Online