Snow falling in parts of South

Winter is biting today with snow falling in many parts of the South, and there are warnings in place for many southern roads owing to ice and snow.

There is snow falling in parts of Queenstown and in Ranfurly this morning and there is a coating of snow on parts of SH94.

In Dunedin the MetService is warning 1cm of snow could settle on the Northern Motorway between 12pm and midnight and snow as expected to affect other roads as low as 300m.

The NZ Transport Agency is encouraging motorists to keep a close eye on weather conditions and road updates before venturing out.

All southern highways are open this morning but there are warnings in place for several roads. 

NZTA warnings for Otago and Southland include:

State Highway 1 Pine Hill to Palmerston (includes the northern motorway); SH87 Kyeburn to Outram; SH6 Lumsden to Kingston; SH85 Palmerston to Kyeburn; SH90 Waikoikoi to Tapanui; SH6 Athol to Kingston; SH93 Clinton to Mataura; SH94 Mossburn; SH 94 Te Anau to Lumsden. 

MetService has road snow warnings in place for Dunedin's Northern Motorway, the Lindis Pass (SH8), the Crown Range Road, the Milford Road (SH94), and further north, for the Lewis Pass (SH7), Arthur's Pass (SH73) and Porters Pass (SH73).

Due to surface flooding, the Southland District Council's roading contractor has closed Fleming Road from the Tokanui Gorge Road highway to Mataura Island-Fortrose Road.

Mataura Island- Titiroa Road is also closed.

Tokanui Gorge Road highway is still open but is being monitored closely.

The warnings accompany chilly conditions that are tipped to ease through the day, but Dunedin’s temperature is not expected to rise above 7degC today.

Snow has been falling in parts of Queenstown throughout the morning.

While there was no snow reported in the CBD - there are flurries in Shotover Country, Lake Hayes Estate and the crown range.

MetService said snow was expected to fall on the Alpine stretch between 6am and 10am today.

A heavy snow watch is in force for Clutha, Southland and southern Fiordland until 10am today. Snow is possible to 300m above sea level.

In Dunedin, snow was possible on the hilltops and was expected to affect the Northern Motorway.

MetService forecaster Cameron Coutts said the cold front would sweep up the east of the South Island and set in overnight.

Southwesterly winds were expected to be strong near the coast.

The chilly conditions and blustery winds would ease gradually, Mr Coutts said.

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