Recently repaired bridge destroyed
Torrential rain, heavy winds and melting snow over the weekend caused chaos in parts of the country, including wiping-out an iconic bridge used in Lord of the Rings.
The 110-year-old Wairarapa bridge used by director Peter Jackson in his Lord of the Rings trilogy was partially destroyed today after it was hit by a falling tree.
Property owners Colin and Rosie Bevan said they were devastated as the bridge had just been restored.
The bridge was used in the scene in which Smeagol kills Deagol in a fight over the Ring. It was also used in the scene in which Galadriel and the elves farewelled the companions at Lothlorien.
The couple said it was a major attraction for many tourists who enjoyed having their photographs taken on it.
Replacing it would cost around $35,000. The historic Fernside property also lost four other trees and the roof of the main house was damaged when copper sheets were lifted by the winds, it owners said.
Meanwhile, in the South Island, heavy rainfall in the Southern Alps, combined with snow melt and an already wet catchment was responsible for high river levels.
Environment Canterbury's South Canterbury flood controller Graham Sullivan said the Rangitata River reached 1657 cubic metres per second at 10.30am.
By KATARINA FILIPE and Stuff.co.nz