Snow, ice prompt more road warnings

Winter is biting around the country today and there are warnings in place for many roads owing to ice and snow, including Arthur's and Porters passes.

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

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).

The warnings accompany chilly conditions that are tipped to ease through the day.

A heavy snow watch was in force for Clutha, Southland and southern Fiordland overnight. Snow was possible to 300m above sea level.

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

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. 

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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