A slip on the Kaimai road is causing traffic chaos on the outskirts of Tauranga. Callers to SunLive report the landslide at Ruahihi means travellers into the city are diverted via Poripori Road. Traffic heading for the Waikato is being turned back at Tauriko.
Traffic into town is diverted under the Wairoa bridge for the left turn onto SH2
Extreme weather overnight has exposed large boulders on the slip face which emergency services fear may dislodge and roll onto the highway.
Travellers are urged to delay their travel or take alternate routes.
Police say State Highway 29 between Omanawa Road and Poripori Road is closed due to the slip and threat of falling debris.
Acting Senior Sergeant Mark Holmes of the Tauranga Police advises a detour is in place via Wairoa Road off SH2 at Bethlehem through Crawford Road to Poripori Road and SH29.
The site is the Ruahihi Bluffs, on the bend by the power station. The section of highway expereinced closures recently while contractors worked to clear threatening rocks and trees overhanging the highway.
Mr Holmes said the road will be closed to allow clearance work and stabilising of the hillside above the roadway affected. Contractors and engineers are working on site to ensure the roadway is safe for travelling public.
Police advise those motorists planning to travel to the Waikato to expect delays. SH2 Via Katikati to the Waikato through Waihï and Paeroa is currently open.
SunLive callers report heavy congestion around the Wairoa River bridge as a result of the Kaimai traffic diversions.
Police are asking all drivers to take extra care and drive to the conditions. The heavy rain experienced in the Western Bay of Plenty has caused road conditions to deteriorate on the regions roads and highways.
Surface flooding has occurred in several areas and a small slip has come down onto the road near the vicinity of Valley View Road.
Flooding closed one lane of SH2 at Whakamarama between Tauranga and Katikati. The flooding is clearly marked with signs and drivers are asked to proceed with care.
A tree fallen across SH2 completely blocking both lanes for a time, approximately 10km north of Katikati near Bridgman Lane. A minor slip has also occurred. Delays are expected until the roadway is clear.
Acting Senior Sergeant Holmes also urges all drivers to reduce their speed and increase their following distances and drive with headlights on as the risk of losing control in the wet conditions was high.