Seal 'rubber-neckers' causing delays

00:18, Jul 19 2013
Seal on Cobham Drive
IN THE SUN: A seal near Cobham Drive caused a traffic jam because of rubber-necking motorists.

A seal is causing traffic disruption on the road to Wellington Airport this morning.

Inspector Marty Parker of police communications said police had received reports of a seal trying to break through a "people barrier" on the Cobham Drive section of State Highway 1.

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He said the seal's presence was causing rubber-necking problems among commuters heading in to the city to work from the eastern suburbs. 

Initial reports did not indicate whether the seal was blocking traffic heading to Miramar and Wellington Airport.

The latest seal incident is the third report of a seal causing problems in the last week.


Yesterday a seal crossed a busy six-lane road and took up a temporary home in a central Wellington park.

A police spokesman said the seal emerged from the lagoon at Frank Kitts Park, hauled itself across the six-lane Jervois Quay, and planted itself in a spot of park beneath the City to Sea Bridge beside Harris St about 5.40am.

For about 30 minutes the stubborn seal shrugged off police urgings to return to the water.

Earlier this week a seal was spotted in an unusual spot on Wellington's south coast, between Island and Owhiro bays.

Island Bay Marine Education Centre discovery programme manager Julian Hodge said a growing number of seals had been spotted recently away from traditional areas at Red Rocks and the Wainuiomata coast.

It was believed populations were now so healthy there that some seals were moving further afield.

The Dominion Post