The Antarctic blast has moved north from South Island at the weekend and has turned New Zealand’s winter into one in more than half century occurrence.
Roads have been closed, flights have been cancelled, mail deliveries have been interrupted, power has been shut off. People have been advised to be prepared for being trapped indoors ( stock-up on emergency food and water).
A lots of state highways are impassable, including Arthurs Pass and Lewis Pass in the South Island Rimutaka Hill and Desert Road North Island. In the Wellington region, five main roads have been closed and 24 crashes were reported on Monday.[googlead tip=”patrat_mic” aliniat=”dreapta”]
Wellington Airport’s flights have been put on hold, over hundred passengers were stranded at Dunedin Airport, in Auckland flights to Queenstown have been cancelled.
In the South Island nine people required medical care, while in Auckland five people were taken to hospital, four after a tree crashed down on their house and an old man after he was blown by the wind.
Almost two thousand dairy farms dumped tons of milk, since the collection tankers were stranded because of the weather conditions.[googlead tip=”lista_medie” aliniat=”stanga”]
New Zealand’s winter has also brought joy to a lot of people, since they have not seen snow flakes in decades.
The inhabitants of Wellington and Auckland saw their first snow in more than 30 years. Climate scientist Georgina Griffiths of The National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research said Monday was the coldest day ever recorded in Auckland. Since 1939 the snow never has settled on the Auckland’s ground. The level of snow that fell in Wellington had not been seen since at least 1970s according to MetService.
Some people have lived their entire life in Auckland without seeing any snow. They were astonished, delighted, fascinated. They smiled, they shot pictures, or simply enjoyed the snow.
Stephen Fry commented on Twitter:
“NZ has, bless it, gone officially mad. First snow in Auckland since the 30s. Children running along with open mouths to taste the flakes :)”
Prime Minister John Key said it was the first time he could remember to see a snowfall in Auckland and advised New Zealanders “to be cautious and a little bit careful – make sure they keep an eye out for their family and friends, and if they are aware of their neighbours living alone, it might be a good idea just to check up on them and make sure everything is OK.”
“The conditions are cold enough to bring snow down to 300 metres, the height of the Sky Tower,” MetService spokesman Bob McDavitt said on Monday.
This is one of the major snowfall seen in New Zealand’s winter and weather conditions seems to become more severes.