Lanes reopened on Auckland's Southern Motorway following critical injuries and traffic mayhem

All southbound lanes have been re-opened on Auckland's Southern Motoway after East Tamaki Rd, following an earlier collision.

One person is in critical condition as a result of the two-car crash, which closed all southbound lanes between East Tamaki Rd and Te Irirangi Drive.

This caused significant delays in both directions with the southbound tail back to Mt Wellington, and a slow patch northbound through Manukau.

A crash on the Southern Motorway in Auckland on Saturday, April 21.
A crash on the Southern Motorway in Auckland on Saturday, April 21. Source: 1 NEWS

Auckland Transport Operations Centre Manager Rua Pani says motorists can expect long delays and are advised to avoid the area or delay their travel.

An earlier crash near Ellerslie, saw two southbound lanes blocked for about an hour.

It was cleared at noon is no longer causing delays in the area. 

Air New Zealand flight suffering cabin issue circles for almost three hours

Air New Zealand flight NZ99 from Auckland to Narita circled for more than two hours before returning to Auckland due to an issue with the air reticulation system on board.

There were 256 passengers onboard the Boeing 787 Dreamliner as it departed from Auckland Airport about 10.10am.

It was scheduled for an eight-hour flight to Narita but turned back to Auckland after circling off Northland for almost three hours, touching down about 1pm.

A flight path map of Air New Zealand flight NZ99 as of 12.30pm on April 21, 2018.
A flight path map of Air New Zealand flight NZ99 as of 12.30pm on April 21, 2018. Source: Flightradar24


'I felt privileged to wear it'- PM Jacinda Ardern thanks korowai's owner after fantastic international reception at CHOGM

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has met with the woman who loaned her the beautiful korowai cloak, which has struck a chord both in New Zealand and overseas. 

Whaea Esther Jessop, a senior member of Ngati Ranana London Maori Club, loaned the traditional cloak to Ms Ardern for the Queen's Commonwealth Head's of Government dinner.

A post from the NZ High Commission showed a picture of Ms Ardern with Whaea Esther.

The group is celebrating its 60th year of bringing Māori culture to London.

Ms Ardern said she received numerous questions about the cloak, its origins and its significance. Source: 1 NEWS

Ms Ardern spoke a little of the cloak's back story in an interview after the banquet at Buckingham Palace. 

"I felt privileged to wear it," she said.

Earlier today the Prime Minister met with Queen Elizabeth. Source: 1 NEWS

The expectant mother said the korowai sparked a lot of interest at the dinner, where she was invited to toast the Commonwealth.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern met the Queen in London, and delivered a toast to Commonwealth leaders. Source: 1 NEWS

Earlier on in her trip, Ms Ardern said she felt "exceptionally lucky" when she and her partner Clarke Gayford were one of four leaders to have a private sit down with the queen.