Freak tides could flood parts of the Auckland motorway
network tonight and tomorrow.
The New Zealand Transport Agency said the areas at most risk
are the northwestern motorway causeway between Pt Chev and
Avondale and the northern motorway southbound from Esmonde Rd
to the Exmouth Rd footbridge.
Critical times will be high tides at 8pm tonight and 8am and
"We're on flood alert and have a number of measures in place
to ensure the motorways at those points remain safe, but
people will need to take extreme care over the next day or
so,'' agency spokesman Tommy Parker said.
Average high tides in the Waitemata Harbour vary between 2.6
and 3 metres, but it is expected high tides over the next two
days to vary between 3.4 and 3.6 metres.
The high tides coincide with a rain front accompanied by
strong winds moving across the country. The front's low
atmospheric pressure can increase tide levels.
"It's almost certain the northwestern cycleway adjacent to
the motorway will be flooded _ we are asking people to avoid
using it 90 minutes either side of the high tides,'' Mr
"Tidal water could also cover bus lanes or outer traffic
lanes on the motorways.''
Roadside message boards will keep drivers informed. Response
crews are on standby to close lanes and redirect traffic if
"We'll do everything we can to keep the motorways fully open
and safe but the weather, particularly the wind, will be the
critical factor over the next 36 hours,'' Mr Parker said.