Wellington's second coldest day

The Wellington Cable Car makes its way up the hill during snowfall.
1 of 47KARRYN BAUDET
The Wellington Cable Car makes its way up the hill during snowfall.
The top of Skyline Walkway in Crofton Downs looking across Wellington Harbour.
2 of 47JULIE GRANT
The top of Skyline Walkway in Crofton Downs looking across Wellington Harbour.
A view of the Orongorongo Ranges from Hataitai.
3 of 47MEGAN WILLIAMS
A view of the Orongorongo Ranges from Hataitai.
A Zumba class at Fitness Dynamix in Miramar takes it outside to have some fun on Monday.
4 of 47VIV MCALISTER
A Zumba class at Fitness Dynamix in Miramar takes it outside to have some fun on Monday.
Snow in Churton Park on Monday.
5 of 47NICOLE BURROUGHS
Snow in Churton Park on Monday.
A sign at the edge of Porirua surrounded by snow-covered fields.
6 of 47ALAN MILES
A sign at the edge of Porirua surrounded by snow-covered fields.
Whiteman's Valley completely covered with snow on Monday.
7 of 47AINSLEY CHAPMAN
Whiteman's Valley completely covered with snow on Monday.
Cheetwood St, Churton Park after heavy snow.
8 of 47THOMAS KAFFES
Cheetwood St, Churton Park after heavy snow.
A Bluebridge ferry is turned slowly in Wellington Harbour after unsuccessfully trying to cross Cook Strait.
9 of 47DAVID SERCOMBE
A Bluebridge ferry is turned slowly in Wellington Harbour after unsuccessfully trying to cross Cook Strait.
Paremata boatsheds at lunchtime today. Sent in by Dean Wyborn.
10 of 47
Paremata boatsheds at lunchtime today. Sent in by Dean Wyborn.
Ben Fulton chilling with with his snowman in Wellington.
11 of 47
Ben Fulton chilling with with his snowman in Wellington.
Abby (4) enjoying the snow in Newlands.
12 of 47
Abby (4) enjoying the snow in Newlands.
Upper Hutt. Sent in by Edward Jordan.
13 of 47
Upper Hutt. Sent in by Edward Jordan.
The Beehive endures a blanketing of snow in Wellington.
14 of 47DEAN HILLIER
The Beehive endures a blanketing of snow in Wellington.
St John's in the snow. Sent in by Helen Belchamber.
15 of 47
St John's in the snow. Sent in by Helen Belchamber.
Emma Fotheringhame sent this picture of snow in Mount Cook.
16 of 47
Emma Fotheringhame sent this picture of snow in Mount Cook.
Heavy snowfall in Silverstream.
17 of 47B. TEOH
Heavy snowfall in Silverstream.
Logan Pitchford enjoys the snow in Avro Road, Whitemans Valley.
18 of 47KATHRYN PITCHFORD
Logan Pitchford enjoys the snow in Avro Road, Whitemans Valley.
Office workers stand in front of the Old Bank Arcade enjoying the snow.
19 of 47DANIEL WYLIE
Office workers stand in front of the Old Bank Arcade enjoying the snow.
Photos from a penthouse apartment on Tory St.
20 of 47ROWENA BROWN
Photos from a penthouse apartment on Tory St.
Lavanya Chevuru and Deepika Manu celebrate India Independence day on Willis St in the snow.
21 of 47YASMIN IRANI
Lavanya Chevuru and Deepika Manu celebrate India Independence day on Willis St in the snow.
A photo taken from Moon Ridge Road in Upper Hutt overlooking Upper Hutt.
22 of 47MARIA VISEUR
A photo taken from Moon Ridge Road in Upper Hutt overlooking Upper Hutt.
The Welcome To Khandallah sign is blanketed in snow on Monday.
23 of 47SAM
The Welcome To Khandallah sign is blanketed in snow on Monday.
A lion at Wellington Zoo endures the snow.
24 of 47WELLINGTON ZOO/Facebook
A lion at Wellington Zoo endures the snow.
Heavy snow falls on Willis St in Wellington.
25 of 47DOUGLAS VOON
Heavy snow falls on Willis St in Wellington.
Snow can be seen on hills behind Highbury after heavy snow fell in Wellington.
26 of 47LIZ RITCHIE
Snow can be seen on hills behind Highbury after heavy snow fell in Wellington.
Heavy snow on the ground in Carterton on Monday.
27 of 47PHIL O'BRIEN
Heavy snow on the ground in Carterton on Monday.
A red panda at Wellington Zoo walks in the trees during a snow storm in Wellington.
28 of 47WELLINGTON ZOO/Facebook
A red panda at Wellington Zoo walks in the trees during a snow storm in Wellington.
The McKenna family - Yasmyn, 3, Grant, and Kaeden, 4 - pose with their snowman in Broadmeadows on Monday.
29 of 47KARYN MCKENNA
The McKenna family - Yasmyn, 3, Grant, and Kaeden, 4 - pose with their snowman in Broadmeadows on Monday.
A motorcyclist rides down Willis St during snow fall on Monday.
30 of 47DOUGLAS VOON
A motorcyclist rides down Willis St during snow fall on Monday.
Snow falls heavily on Lambton Quay.
31 of 47DAVID LIM
Snow falls heavily on Lambton Quay.
Snow buffets The Terrace in Wellington as snow falls to sea level on Monday.
32 of 47ANDREW GORRIE
Snow buffets The Terrace in Wellington as snow falls to sea level on Monday.
Patrons at Midnight Espresso watch as snow falls on Cuba St in Wellington.
33 of 47PENELOPE BORLAND
Patrons at Midnight Espresso watch as snow falls on Cuba St in Wellington.
George and Hunter Farman enjoy a walk in the snow in Masterton.
34 of 47KATIE FARMAN
George and Hunter Farman enjoy a walk in the snow in Masterton.
George, Hunter and Thomas Farman making first tracks in the snow in Masterton.
35 of 47KATIE FARMAN
George, Hunter and Thomas Farman making first tracks in the snow in Masterton.
Carla Fonseca-Paris enjoys the snow at Victoria University's Kelburn campus.
36 of 47KATIE FARMAN
Carla Fonseca-Paris enjoys the snow at Victoria University's Kelburn campus.
Students at Victoria University's Kelburn campus slide down hills on cardboard boxes during snow fall in Wellington.
37 of 47KATIE FARMAN
Students at Victoria University's Kelburn campus slide down hills on cardboard boxes during snow fall in Wellington.
Heavy snow falls on Monday in Ngaio.
38 of 47RHYS MURRIHY
Heavy snow falls on Monday in Ngaio.
Snow hits Wellington Railway Station on Monday.
39 of 47JAMES AULT
Snow hits Wellington Railway Station on Monday.
A woman on Lambton Quay enjoys the snow falling to sea level on Monday.
40 of 47ANDREW GORRIE
A woman on Lambton Quay enjoys the snow falling to sea level on Monday.
Snow falls on the Parliament grounds.
41 of 47LIZ PHILLIPS
Snow falls on the Parliament grounds.
A watches as snow falls on Wellington's Lambton Quay.
42 of 47HAMISH COLEMAN-ROSS
A watches as snow falls on Wellington's Lambton Quay.
Looking out from Jaunpur Crescent from Broadmeadows at 9:30 on Monday.
43 of 47DIANE AND DIRK
Looking out from Jaunpur Crescent from Broadmeadows at 9:30 on Monday.
Jaunpur Crescent in Broadmeadows looking over the harbour on Monday.
44 of 47DIANE AND DIRK
Jaunpur Crescent in Broadmeadows looking over the harbour on Monday.
Looking up Jaunpur Crescent in Broadmeadows at 9.30am on Monday.
45 of 47DIANE AND DIRK
Looking up Jaunpur Crescent in Broadmeadows at 9.30am on Monday.
A thick coating of snow remains on the ground in Broadmeadows - including dog tracks.
46 of 47DIANE AND DIRK
A thick coating of snow remains on the ground in Broadmeadows - including dog tracks.
Looking east over Lower Hutt towards Wainuiomata and the Rimutaka ranges at about 7am on Monday morning from Tirohanga Rd.
47 of 47SIGURD MAGNESSON
Looking east over Lower Hutt towards Wainuiomata and the Rimutaka ranges at about 7am on Monday morning from Tirohanga Rd.

Treacherous conditions are causing travel havoc with road closures and delays or cancellations on many bus services.

Valley Flyer buses to and from Wainuiomata have been cancelled as travelling conditions over the hill become too dangerous.

There are also delays and shortened bus routes on many services in both Wellington and the Hutt Valley.

Leonie Whiting enjoying the snow in Grenada Village, Mark Avenue.
1 of 20
Leonie Whiting enjoying the snow in Grenada Village, Mark Avenue.
The Waikanae town centre after an overnight dusting of snow.
2 of 20JIMI MICHL
The Waikanae town centre after an overnight dusting of snow.
Snow begins to fall at about 3pm on Tuesday afternoon.
3 of 20REBECCA PALMER
Snow begins to fall at about 3pm on Tuesday afternoon.
View over Johnsonville from Ken Thomason & Merrilyn Lander's deck.
4 of 20Ken Thomason & Merrilyn Lander
View over Johnsonville from Ken Thomason & Merrilyn Lander's deck.
The moon sets over the frosty Crofton Hills on Tuesday morning.
5 of 20SUZANNE PERI-CHAPMAN
The moon sets over the frosty Crofton Hills on Tuesday morning.
Porirua harbour with snow-covered hills above the motorway.
6 of 20DREEN BRADLEY
Porirua harbour with snow-covered hills above the motorway.
Nick Fone, left, and Daniel Mcfadyen on Mt Kaukau, where they skiied all the way down to Kanpur Road and Nalanda Cres in Broadmeadows.
7 of 20DANIEL MCFADYEN
Nick Fone, left, and Daniel Mcfadyen on Mt Kaukau, where they skiied all the way down to Kanpur Road and Nalanda Cres in Broadmeadows.
An aerial view of Newlands rise after heavy snowfall.
8 of 20LIZ
An aerial view of Newlands rise after heavy snowfall.
A view of Wellington Harbour on Tuesday morning from Brooklyn.
9 of 20JAYSELL GOPAL
A view of Wellington Harbour on Tuesday morning from Brooklyn.
An aerial view of Mt Kaukau and some of the western suburbs.
10 of 20LIZ
An aerial view of Mt Kaukau and some of the western suburbs.
An aerial view of Ngauranga.
11 of 20LIZ
An aerial view of Ngauranga.
Ice makes an unusual pattern on a corrugated roof on Tuesday morning.
12 of 20BERNIE SINCLAIR
Ice makes an unusual pattern on a corrugated roof on Tuesday morning.
An aerial view of Grenada taken on Tuesday morning.
13 of 20LIZ
An aerial view of Grenada taken on Tuesday morning.
A photo taken from Mt Kaukau this morning looking across the harbour to Wellington.
14 of 20BRENDAN MAI
A photo taken from Mt Kaukau this morning looking across the harbour to Wellington.
A man walks - or carries - his dog on skis in Khandallah.
15 of 20DIANE AND DIRK
A man walks - or carries - his dog on skis in Khandallah.
Pateke at Zealandia endure the snow.
16 of 20BRIAN IRELAND
Pateke at Zealandia endure the snow.
A property is encrusted with ice and snow in Woodridge, Newlands.
17 of 20SHONA MACKAY
A property is encrusted with ice and snow in Woodridge, Newlands.
Jaunpur Crescent in Khandallah at 8:30 on Tuesday after continued snow fall.
18 of 20DIANE AND DIRK
Jaunpur Crescent in Khandallah at 8:30 on Tuesday after continued snow fall.
Snow blankets Broadmeadows on Tuesday morning.
19 of 20MARK STEVENS
Snow blankets Broadmeadows on Tuesday morning.
A takahe at Zealandia after heavy snowfall.
20 of 20BRIAN IRELAND
A takahe at Zealandia after heavy snowfall.

If buses are not running part or whole routes this evening then Metlink said it was safe to assume it would be a similar situation in the morning.

Motorists are being urged to stay off Wellington roads as snow falls around the region.

Wainuiomata Hill Rd was closed at 3.45pm. Rimutaka Hill Rd remains closed and State Highway 58 (Haywards Hill Rd), was "marginal", central communications Inspector Ken Climo said.

Aerial photos of the Wellington region after heavy snow: Churton Park
1 of 10ANDREW GORRIE/Dominion Post
Aerial photos of the Wellington region after heavy snow: Churton Park
Aerial photos of the Wellington region after heavy snow:  Pauatahanui and Paremata.
2 of 10ANDREW GORRIE/Dominion Post
Aerial photos of the Wellington region after heavy snow: Pauatahanui and Paremata.
Aerial photos of the Wellington region after heavy snow: The Paekakariki hills.
3 of 10ANDREW GORRIE/Dominion Post
Aerial photos of the Wellington region after heavy snow: The Paekakariki hills.
Aerial photos of the Wellington region after heavy snow: Makara wind farm.
4 of 10ANDREW GORRIE/Dominion Post
Aerial photos of the Wellington region after heavy snow: Makara wind farm.
Aerial photos of the Wellington region after heavy snow: Karori.
5 of 10ANDREW GORRIE/Dominion Post
Aerial photos of the Wellington region after heavy snow: Karori.
Aerial photos of the Wellington region after heavy snow: Khandallah/Ngaio area.
6 of 10ANDREW GORRIE/Dominion Post
Aerial photos of the Wellington region after heavy snow: Khandallah/Ngaio area.
An aerial view of Newlands rise after heavy snowfall.
7 of 10LIZ
An aerial view of Newlands rise after heavy snowfall.
An aerial view of Mt Kaukau and some of the western suburbs.
8 of 10LIZ
An aerial view of Mt Kaukau and some of the western suburbs.
An aerial view of Ngauranga.
9 of 10LIZ
An aerial view of Ngauranga.
An aerial view of Grenada taken on Tuesday morning.
10 of 10LIZ
An aerial view of Grenada taken on Tuesday morning.

"What we're advising motorists to do is stay off the roads," Mr Climo said. "Necessary travel only. If they are going to travel they've got to be prepared for it … the road conditions are treacherous."

Motorists should make alternative arrangements such as staying at friends' houses if it was a safer option.

In Upper Hutt, Moonshine Hill Road, Blue Mountains Road, Mangaroa Hill Road and Wallaceville Hill Road are all closed and will remain closed over night.

Georgia and Josh Pattison of Wainuiomata having fun playing in their first snowfall.
1 of 43HEATHER AND TONY
Georgia and Josh Pattison of Wainuiomata having fun playing in their first snowfall.
A view of Lower Hutt on Sunday after snowfall.
2 of 43GLENN WILLIAMS
A view of Lower Hutt on Sunday after snowfall.
Heavy snow on Simla Crescent in Khandallah on Sunday evening.
3 of 43FIONA WATSON
Heavy snow on Simla Crescent in Khandallah on Sunday evening.
A snowman built on Halswater Drive, Churton Park by Jono and Kirsty Vautier.
4 of 43JONATHAN VAUTIER
A snowman built on Halswater Drive, Churton Park by Jono and Kirsty Vautier.
Chilly train passengers wait at Tawa station on Sunday.
5 of 43ROB GLACIER
Chilly train passengers wait at Tawa station on Sunday.
Snow covers train tracks at Tawa.
6 of 43ROB GLACIER
Snow covers train tracks at Tawa.
Zachery Gilligan at Titahi Bay beach on Sunday.
7 of 43PETRINA GILLIGAN
Zachery Gilligan at Titahi Bay beach on Sunday.
A boy enjoys the snow in Karori.
8 of 43MELISSA SPICER
A boy enjoys the snow in Karori.
Snow falls in Khandallah on Sunday night.
9 of 43JO PRINCE
Snow falls in Khandallah on Sunday night.
Anjali Gupta with a snow man she made on Ashton Fitchett Dr in Brooklyn.
10 of 43DINESH AND ANURADHA GUPTA
Anjali Gupta with a snow man she made on Ashton Fitchett Dr in Brooklyn.
A chilean snowman created after Sunday's flurry.
11 of 43JORGE AND GLENYS SANDOVAL
A chilean snowman created after Sunday's flurry.
Snow covers a Marton home on Sunday.
12 of 43JEFF LEES
Snow covers a Marton home on Sunday.
From left, Ella Clarke, Caitlin Clarke, Jessie Williams, Lucy Clarke, Ollie Williams and Timmy Williams enjoy the snow on Sunday.
13 of 43PAUL WILLIAMS
From left, Ella Clarke, Caitlin Clarke, Jessie Williams, Lucy Clarke, Ollie Williams and Timmy Williams enjoy the snow on Sunday.
Snow covers cars and houses in Newlands on Sunday.
14 of 43IAN HUTCHINGS
Snow covers cars and houses in Newlands on Sunday.
Eleanor Currier poses for a photo in the snow in Elsdon, Porirua.
15 of 43ELEANOR CURRIER
Eleanor Currier poses for a photo in the snow in Elsdon, Porirua.
Two dogs play in the unusually chilly climate in Khandallah.
16 of 43MELISSA SPICER
Two dogs play in the unusually chilly climate in Khandallah.
Snow covers a vehicle in Johnsonville at about 8pm on Sunday night.
17 of 43SAM ANDREWS
Snow covers a vehicle in Johnsonville at about 8pm on Sunday night.
Monica Murray, 8, of Whitby, playing in the snow on Sunday night.
18 of 43MICHAEL SUMMERVILLE
Monica Murray, 8, of Whitby, playing in the snow on Sunday night.
Kandy Crescent in Ngaio under a thick coating of snow on Sunday.
19 of 43SUMAN SAJWAN
Kandy Crescent in Ngaio under a thick coating of snow on Sunday.
Snow at sea level in Titahi Bay.
20 of 43PETER PARKER
Snow at sea level in Titahi Bay.
Deck chairs covered with snow at Titahi Bay.
21 of 43PETER PARKER
Deck chairs covered with snow at Titahi Bay.
The Pointon farm at Pukerua Bay is covered with snow.
22 of 43RICHARD POINTON
The Pointon farm at Pukerua Bay is covered with snow.
Westpark School in Johnsonville on Sunday.
23 of 43HANNA BUTLER
Westpark School in Johnsonville on Sunday.
A family plays in the snow at Westpark School on Sunday.
24 of 43HANNA BUTLER
A family plays in the snow at Westpark School on Sunday.
A family goes for a walk in the snow in Newlands on Sunday.
25 of 43DARREN SWITALLA
A family goes for a walk in the snow in Newlands on Sunday.
Snow fills the backyard of a Johnsonville home on Sunday.
26 of 43SUMI TAYLOR
Snow fills the backyard of a Johnsonville home on Sunday.
Benny Hendry poses for a photo in the snow at Glenside on Sunday night.
27 of 43PAUL HENDRY
Benny Hendry poses for a photo in the snow at Glenside on Sunday night.
A snowman on the balcony of an Oriental Parade house.
28 of 43ANGELA BLACHNITZKY
A snowman on the balcony of an Oriental Parade house.
Johnsonville gets a heavy coating of snow on Sunday.
29 of 43MARK AND MEGAN
Johnsonville gets a heavy coating of snow on Sunday.
A playground in Churton Park on Sunday.
30 of 43SANDRA YELDON
A playground in Churton Park on Sunday.
Snow in Highbury, Wellington on Sunday.
31 of 43BETHANY TIBBO
Snow in Highbury, Wellington on Sunday.
A tree is coated with ice in Johnsonville on Sunday.
32 of 43PATRICK CREWDSON
A tree is coated with ice in Johnsonville on Sunday.
Snow on a Ngaio St on Sunday evening.
33 of 43TOM DOWLING
Snow on a Ngaio St on Sunday evening.
A house is hit by the blizzard at the top section of Orangi Kaupapa Rd in Northland on Sunday.
34 of 43AMELIA STUART
A house is hit by the blizzard at the top section of Orangi Kaupapa Rd in Northland on Sunday.
Eight-year-old Ki takes a bike ride in Churton Park, outside of Wellington.
35 of 43TONY CHRISTENSEN
Eight-year-old Ki takes a bike ride in Churton Park, outside of Wellington.
Snow in the Wellington suburb of Karori.
36 of 43ROHAN MOLLOY
Snow in the Wellington suburb of Karori.
Snow on the waterfront in Plimmerton, outside of Wellington.
37 of 43JOSH HARDING
Snow on the waterfront in Plimmerton, outside of Wellington.
Olivia Stevens wraps up warm to brave the snow in Broadmeadows.
38 of 43
Olivia Stevens wraps up warm to brave the snow in Broadmeadows.
Ally Ringrose, 13, makes a snow angel in Titahi Bay.
39 of 43HELEN DUNCAN
Ally Ringrose, 13, makes a snow angel in Titahi Bay.
Snow covers front lawns in Whitby, outside of Wellington.
40 of 43RUDY LOPEZ
Snow covers front lawns in Whitby, outside of Wellington.
Ben Lopez, 11, playing in the snow in Whitby, outside of Wellington.
41 of 43JAN LOPEZ
Ben Lopez, 11, playing in the snow in Whitby, outside of Wellington.
Snow turned Johnsonville into a winter wonderland.
42 of 43CHAKKARADEEP CHANDRAN
Snow turned Johnsonville into a winter wonderland.
Wainuiomata residents were delighted by the unusual sight of snow.
43 of 43K CASSIDY
Wainuiomata residents were delighted by the unusual sight of snow.

Upper Hutt City Council is warning travellers wanting to access Mangaroa and Whiteman’s Valley to use Plateau Road. The dip in Parkes Line Road is open with assistance and likely delays. Efforts will continue to keep this road open overnight.

Wellington City council is advising motorists to avoid driving in suburbs where it is reported to be snowing heavily.

Those suburbs include Karori, Kelburn, Khandallah, Brooklyn, Northland, Wilton, Wadestown, Johnsonville, Broadmeadows and Newlands.

The council has posted 'road closed' signs at the Karori end of the Makara Hill Road - which was also closed last night. 'Road closed' signs may also again be posted at Orangi-Kaupapa Road in Northland and Horokiwi West Road in Newlands if the snow continues.

Snow in Wellington
Snow in Wellington

If the cold weather continues then the council will again advise motorists not to drive tomorrow morning unless absolutely necessary.

Te Wharau Rd at Gladstone, east of Carterton, is closed at the Te Wharau/Te Whiti intersection and will remain so overnight.

The Wellington Cable Car was put out of action during the power fluctuations last night and has remained out of use all day.

WHITE FLIGHT: University student Nick Hanover gets a bit of air under his snowboard in Brooklyn yesterday.
MAARTEN HOLL/The Dominion Post
WHITE FLIGHT: University student Nick Hanover gets a bit of air under his snowboard in Brooklyn yesterday.

Technicians are hoping it will be back in action tomorrow but the council said this could not be guaranteed.

Train services on the Hutt Valley line have been delayed and slowed by a breakdown of one train in Upper Hutt and heavy snow on the Hutt Valley line.

Transmetro spokeswoman Sophie Lee said trains could run when there was snow on the lines but the loss of traction forced them to run more slowly.

Two of this afternoon's commuter trains on the Kapiti line were cancelled but buses services around Wellington are all running to schedule.

Latest key information: Roads, buses, trains, schools

Tell us your snow story. Leave a comment below or email us at web@dompost.co.nz

Email your snow photos to web@dompost.co.nz

Slips and falls on snow and ice have landed a few people in hospital.

Capital Coast District Health Board emergency management specialist Craig Wallace said it had been busy treating people after slips and trips and two snowboarders suffered minor injuries after falling on Mt Kaukau.

"A lot of elderly patients have presented with everything from a dislocated shoulder, upper arm and wrist fractures to a dislocated ankle," he said.

A Hutt Valley Health spokeswoman said about a dozen people had been treated in the accident and emergency department for minor strains and sprains.

Heavy snow started falling in Wellington just before 3pm.

MetService spokesman Bob McDavitt warned that although the end was in sight for the polar blast, there was still more bad weather on the way before the worst was over.

The Cook Strait is expected to get choppy this evening with southerly winds rising to 45 knots, MetService says.

Swells of up to 5m could hang around until Thursday when gales ease to 30 knots, severe weather forecaster Erick Brenstrum said.

Snow will turn to sleety showers in Wellington over the next few days.

"It's going to keep on being miserable in the sense that it's cold.

"We'll probably get two to three more days of cold rain or sleety showers off and on, not essentially heavy but irritating and the temperature will stay in single digits."

Mr Brenstrum expected the worse to be over by Friday.

The weight of snow has bought down spouting on some houses in snowbound Whitemans Valley, Upper Hutt.

Local plumber Henk Otte, who lives in the valley, said several neighbours had lost their spouting.

"They've got steep pitched roof houses and they're just not designed to take all that snow,'' said Mr Otte who is one of many residents who were cut off by the snow last night.

Meanwhile, the insurance industry is bracing for a run of icy weather-related claims but it is too early to say what the financial toll of the snow storm might be, says the Insurance Council.

Insurance Council spokesman Brett Solvander said many people might claim for cars that had slid off roads and there could be claims from frozen pipes bursting.

"We're still in the process of the event, we're probably only half way through it. The weather is expected to be bad again today and possibly tomorrow.

"We'll start to see claims coming in two to three weeks time. It is very early days.

"People are focussed on trying to get by rather than contacting their insurer and then the claims adjusters have to get out.''

Mr Solvander also expected travel insurance claims where flights had been disrupted, but damage so far seemed to be quite minimal.

WELLINGTON'S SECOND COLDEST DAY ON RECORD

Yesterday was the second coldest day since records began at Wellington Airport in 1959.

The maximum air temperature peaked at 6.8 degrees Celsius - slightly warmer than the record lowest high of 6.5C, NIWA climate scientist Georgina Griffiths said.

The lowest high of 6.5C was recorded during the last snow event that hit most of the country in June 1976, Mrs Griffiths said.

Meanwhile, Auckland experienced the coldest day with the temperature rising to just 8.1C - colder than the previous record of 8.7C  in July 1996 at the airport.

Wellington businesses are battling staff shortages as closed schools, cancelled transport, power cuts and treacherous road conditions affect residents.

The freezing weather has meant more than a dozen schools in Wellington have closed, buses have been cancelled and roads in some suburbs have been declared hazardous.

Many businesses have had staff call in unable to make it into work as they need to stay at home with children.

Wellington Employers' Chamber of Commerce chief executive Ken Harris said some staff were also unwilling to risk driving to work.

Mr Harris said the Chamber had about 10 per cent of its staff working from home today, with one employee sending an email saying:

"Road has black ice, too dangerous to drive. Some people have tried and now road is blocked off with tow services. So, I'm working from home."

Staff shortages have closed libraries in Cummings Park (Ngaio), Johnsonville, Karori, Khandallah, Tawa and Wadestown.

No mail is being delivered to the Lower North Island as posties have been unable to reach their destinations.

PUBLIC SERVICE DISRUPTIONS

Council rubbish and recycling collections may be disrupted today, as trucks struggle make it up some of the higher and steeper streets in the western suburbs. Affected residents should take their rubbish and recycling back and hold it until the next scheduled collection day.

Libraries in Cummings Park (Ngaio) Johnsonville, Karori, Khandallah, Tawa and  Wadestown are closed due to staff shortages.

The Nairnville Recreation Centre in Khandallah is also closed.

No mail is being delivered to the lower North Island today, as snow and ice stop posties from being able to reach their destinations.

The Wellington Mail Centre was closed overnight, with ongoing weather issues in some suburbs preventing mail delivery.

Taranaki, Manawatu and Wairarapa would also be without mail service today.

Several schools in Wellington have also closed, including Wadestown School and Karori Normal School.

Some Wellington buses are running this morning, while other services are limited or have been cancelled.

POWER OUTAGES

Loud thunder and lightning strikes hit the Wellington region last night and power tripped out regularly. Wellington Energy spokesman Drew Douglas said the company was "in a heightened level of preparedness".

Wellington Civil Defence manager Rian Van Schalkwyk urged people to stock up on essential supplies and be ready to be stuck inside their homes for a couple of days. "People should prepare for the worst, which means making sure they're ready in the event that they cannot leave home and may be without electricity and other amenities."

Intermittent power cuts hit many parts of Wellington last night, and power was cut to about 11,000 homes in Petone, Seaview, Gracefield, Wainuiomata, central Lower Hutt and Lowry Bay for about an hour in the afternoon.

Electricity demand soared yesterday, exceeding that of July 25 when a similar antarctic blast saw much of New Zealand come to a standstill. Demand peaked at 6500 megawatts at 9am on Monday, about 500MW more than for the same day last year.

The Dominion Post