Trampers evacuated from Fiordland, 195 others remain stranded at Milford Sound by wild weather

Trampers stranded in Fiordland have been evacuated by helicopter during a break in the weather, but almost 200 others remain stuck in Milford Sound.

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Nearly 200 tourists are still stranded after wild weather battered the region. Source: Breakfast

Helicopters cleared all motorists stuck on the road yesterday and are now evacuating people from huts and lodges on tracks in the area.

One of the huts, Howden Hut on the Routeburn track, was hit by a landslide at around 1.30am today, with 31 people waiting for evacuation from there.

Emergency Management Southland controller Angus McKay says the people are safe and the priority is to get people out of the huts on various tracks in the Fiordland area.

A break in the poor weather has allowed helicopter pilots to evacuate people from huts in Hollyford, Pyke, Big Bay and Martin's Bay.

Around 100 people are believed to have been stranded at those walking tracks, Mr McKay says.

Another 195 tourists remain stuck at Milford Sound and with rain forecast, their evacuation has been put on hold until tomorrow.

Flooding and road closures around Southland means it's safer for them to stay at Milford Sound, Mr McKay says.

"Forecasts look better for tomorrow, so we will continue with plans to safely evacuate everybody in the morning."

Earlier today, Southland District Mayor Gary Tong said there was a lot still coming to light as daybreak arrived.

"It's pretty bad in there, the weather isn't letting up, the rain is continuing to fall," he told TVNZ1's Breakfast this morning.

Mr Tong said there's been a "considerable amount of damage" and it wasn't yet known how much it will cost to fix.

"There's the road in, of course, then the infrastructure in Milford itself, as well as the many walking tracks."

There are around 300 workers in Milford Sound at the moment, as well as around 195 tourists.

More heavy rain is on the way and the state highway is expected to remain closed all week. 

In Gore, Fire and Emergency NZ staff were working this morning to help a number of houses that have been affected by surface flooding.

Fire crews worked with council contractors to remove the water from one property, after being called to an address in Ardwick St around 3.30am.

There have also been several reports of surface flooding in Ruia St.

A FENZ spokesperson told 1 NEWS they were expecting more calls throughout the morning as people woke up and noticed flooding in their homes.