North Island's Desert Road now open, motorists advised to take 'extreme care'

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1 NEWS | NZN

The Desert Road has reopened after a snow plough was sent to rescue cars stuck in the snow on the central North Island road.

The Desert Rd at 5pm yesterday.

Source: Stu and Shelley Easton

The cars became stuck when a burst of snow yesterday hit the road from Rangipo to Waiouru, which is part of State Highway 1.

Police say many of the cars were able to, late last night, make their own way out behind a plough that cleared the way for them, while some cars needed towing.

The Desert Road is now open and NZTA are advising motorists to take "extreme care" due to residue snow and ice. 

MetService said no more significant snowfall was expexted this morning on the Desert Road but conditions have remained icy.

"The biggest risk however is on Sunday night, by which time the skies should have cleared and the winds dropped," MetService said on Facebook.

"This is a classic recipe for frost and ice, which are possible as far north as Northland."

MetService have issued a Severe Weather Watch for strong, cold southwest gales along the east coast of the country, affecting Gisborne, Hawke's Bay, Tararua, Wairarapa, Marlborough and Christchurch. 

Along with travel frustrations an Autumn snow dump brought delight in the South Island today.
Source: 1 NEWS
The Otago town was scattered with snow today.
Source: 1 NEWS

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