Rain causes chaos on Christchurch roads

Persistent heavy rain is causing traffic chaos in Christchurch today.

Surface flooding has been reported in in Beckenham, New Brighton, Northwood, Burnside and Sumner.

There have also been road and bridge closures, and water seeping into houses has been reported.

The Ashley River bridge at Rangiora is closed due to high water levels, while the Heathcote and Avon rivers are also running extremely high.

The Fire Service has recorded between 40-50 flood-related callouts for the South Island since 6am, mainly for flooding and fallen trees, a spokesman said.

"We ask that motorists please take extreme care when driving and are especially aware of pedestrians and cyclists," said Christchurch City Council manager of Transport and Greenspace John Mackie.

"We would also remind road users that as a result of surface flooding, puddles forming may conceal potholes and that they take care when driving or cycling through."

Maintenance crews worked last night and this morning, and are on stand-by to assist with other areas of the city.

The rain was expected to ease this afternoon.

- Kurt Bayer of APNZ

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