Regional News & Alerts

At Red, we need to take action to protect our vulnerable communities and our health system from COVID-19. Learn what we all need to do.

How we protect each other at Red

Life at Red

  • Wear a face covering wherever you go. These are mandatory on flights, public transport, taxis, retail, and public venues.
  • With a My Vaccine Pass, you can visit cafes and bars, attend gatherings and events, and visit close contact businesses like hairdressers. Some limits like capacity and distancing requirements will apply.
  • Without My Vaccine Pass, there are more restrictions in place. For example, you can’t visit close contact businesses like hairdressers or gyms, attend events like concerts, or dine in at cafes and restaurants.
  • Workplaces and schools are open — public health measures will be in place
  • Keep scanning QR codes and recordkeeping wherever you go
  • Keep physically distanced wherever possible
  • If you have cold or flu symptoms, isolate immediately and call Healthline for advice about a test


Road Works and Road Closures

Up to date information on Road Works and Road Closures for week beginning 17th January

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Auckland Transport urged to return schedules to normal amid complaints of full buses

Auckland Transport (AT) is being urged to return public transport schedules to normal as the city’s buses heave under the pressure of people returning to the office. North Shore Ward councillor Richard Hills said he had warned AT that Aucklanders’ Covid-19 “risk appetite had changed” and predicted issues like full buses would arise from Monday morning.

All buses are running under a reduced timetable while Tāmaki Makaurau is at the Orange level of the Covid-19 Protection Framework. Services are expected to return to normal from February 1. Hills said because patronage was below 50 per cent of normal before Christmas, AT had the expectation Delta would continue to keep people away.

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Severe Weather Outlook

A cold front is expected to move northeast over the South Island on Wednesday and across the North Island on Thursday, bringing a period of rain or showers.

There is low confidence of rainfall accumulations reaching warning amounts in Fiordland and the ranges of southern Westland during Wednesday.

A ridge of high pressure is forecast to build over New Zealand on Friday and persist through Saturday, bringing mostly settled weather to much of the country.

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Message to motorists: “It‘s not a race”

With the holidays just around the corner Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency wants to see a safe summer on State Highway 2.

Bay of Plenty system manager Roger Brady says we’re coming to the end of what has been a long and difficult year for many, and we all deserve a safe and relaxing holiday.

“Deaths and serious injuries on our roads are not inevitable, and we shouldn’t accept that serious crashes are just another part of the holidays. We’re all human and we can all make mistakes, but every one of us also has the power to make decisions which will help keep the roads safer for everyone,” says Roger.

“With more cars expected on SH2, there is naturally more risk, so it’s more important than ever that people take care when they’re driving so everyone arrives where they’re going safely.

“We all need to do the simple things to keep safe on the road. That means driving to the conditions, watching your following distance and keeping your speed down. It also means resting before you set off on your journey and sharing the driving if you can.

“Please plan your journey in advance, visit Journey Planner for travel times and allow plenty of extra time to get to your holiday destinations,” says Mr Brady.

“To minimise delays non-essential road works on our highways will be paused from this Wednesday, December 23, to January 5. But even with this non-essential work paused, SH2 will be very busy.

“It’s not a race. You’re on holiday, so take your time, and be courteous to other drivers. Everybody is just trying to get where they’re going safely,” says Roger.

Visit before you head off for the latest information on road works, road closures and delays.

This is what you can expect to see on SH2 between Waihī and Tauranga this week:

Overnight asphalt works, Monday 20 December – Overnight asphalt works will be undertaken on SH2 at Te Puna in both directions between Clarke Road and Te Puna Road on Monday 20 December. Stop/Go traffic management with a 30km/h temporary speed limit in place during the works, which will be carried out between 8pm and 5am (Tuesday). This work was rescheduled from earlier this month due to wet weather.

Waihī to Ōmokoroa safety improvements project – week commencing 20 December

  • Athenree Road to Tanners Point Road – road widening works continue throughout the week. Expect minor delays of one to two minutes.
  • Tanners Point Road to Kauri Point Road – final watermain relocation connections and tidy up are underway. Expect minor delays of one to two minutes.
  • Rea Road / Tetley Road intersection – roundabout preparation works are ongoing. Expect minor delays of about five minutes, particularly on the side roads.
  • Lund Road to Aongatete Road – road widening, earthworks, drainage and service relocation works between Lund Road and Aongatete Road continue with a focus on the Wright Road intersection. Expect minor delays of one to two minutes.

Severe Thunderstorm Warning

Severe Thunderstorm Watch

Area: Wanganui, Manawatu, Tararua, Kapiti-Horowhenua, Wairarapa, Wellington

Period: 7hrs 30min from 12:30pm – 8pm Wed, 15 Dec

Forecast: This afternoon and early evening warm temperatures and moisture at low levels combined with cooling aloft are likely to bring unstable conditions and thunderstorms to the lower North Island.

From Whanganui to Wellington and also Wairarapa including the Tararua District there is a risk of Severe thunderstorms bringing downpours with rainfall rates of 25 to 40 mm/h. Rainfall of this intensity can cause surface and/or flash flooding, especially about low-lying areas such as streams, rivers or narrow valleys, and may also lead to slips.


Issued: 8:06am Wed, 15 Dec
Next update: 8pm Wed, 15 Dec

Note: A Severe Thunderstorm Watch means conditions are favourable for severe thunderstorms in and close to the watch area. People in these areas should be on the lookout for threatening weather conditions and monitor for possible Severe Thunderstorm Warnings.

For information on preparing for and keeping safe during a storm, see the Civil Defence Get Ready website

Civil Defence (NEMA) NZ logo

Civil Defense – Get Flood Prepared

Floods happen often in New Zealand and can cause a lot of damage and loss of life. Find out what to do before, during and after flooding.

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Severe Weather Warning

Heavy rain for eastern parts of New Zealand, and possible severe gales for Buller and northern Westland

Updated to add a Heavy Rain Watch for South Canterbury.

A complex low pressure system affects central and northern New Zealand through to Thursday morning. Heavy Rain Warnings and Watches are in force for eastern parts of the North Island, northwest Tasman, Canterbury and Marlborough. Note, winds may approach severe gale over Buller and northern Westland.

People are advised to keep up to date with the latest forecasts in case any changes are made or further areas are added.
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Ministry of Health

Testing requirements for asymptomatic unvaccinated travellers

To meet domestic travel requirements from mid-December, 15-minute COVID-19 rapid antigen testing will be available at no cost from community pharmacies throughout New Zealand until the end of January 2022.

When the Auckland boundary lifts at 11:59pm on Tuesday 14 December, anyone travelling from Auckland who is not fully vaccinated will need to carry with them evidence of a negative test result within 72 hours of travel. In addition, those who are travelling in other parts of the country with a transport company that requires unvaccinated individuals to be tested will also be required to carry evidence of a negative test result.

Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield says: ‘Aucklanders have borne the brunt of the Delta outbreak, facing restrictions for an extended period to keep the rest of New Zealand safe. But the time has come to allow all New Zealanders to reconnect with one another over summer as safely as possible.’

Testing for asymptomatic unvaccinated individuals over 12 years wishing to depart from Auckland, and asymptomatic unvaccinated domestic travellers from elsewhere in New Zealand, can be a supervised rapid antigen test at selected community pharmacies.

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Victoria University confirms vaccine mandates on campus

Te Herenga Waka–Victoria University of Wellington will require all staff, students, visitors and contractors to be fully vaccinated to enter its campus from next year.

The mandate will start from Monday, January 31 and will also apply to those participating in all face-to-face university activities.

The university has been considering the issue for some time, and was the first to require double vaccinations for those living and working at its halls of residences.

A recent anonymous survey of 1865 staff members and 2743 students showed the majority of respondents supported mandates.

Support for vaccine mandates on Victoria University campus, survey shows
Covid-19: Waikato University to consult on mandatory vaccinations for all staff and students
Covid-19: Auckland and Waikato unis to mandate vaccination for staff, students and visitors

In a statement, vice-chancellor Grant Guilford said the decision was “the right response” while Covid-19 existed in the community.

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Fire and Emergency NZ - Install working smoke alarms to give yourself a warningFire and Emergency NZ - Install working smoke alarms to give yourself a warning

The Community ALERTS Directory appears as a banner on electronic emails and notices circulated by schools using the School-links communication platform.

Submit your community organisation’s latest news item or alert