Chilly blast forecast

The MetService is predicting a snowy winter blast for the deep south.

Duty forecaster John Law said a strong, cold, south to south-west flow that was spreading across the country was likely to bring scattered snow flurries across primarily coastal areas in the lower South Island today.

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However, while the forecast predicts Southland, Otago, and Fiordland will get the brunt of the wintry blast, with scattered snow showers expected down to 200 metres, so far the snow had been scattered and light throughout the region.

The sun was shining in Invercargill this morning, with a lunchtime temperature of 6.5 degrees, and there were showers early in the afternoon but there had been no snow.

In Dunedin, it started snowing on and off about 8am, though flurries were not settling. The miserable weather prompted A-league football side Sydney FC to cancel a planned practice at Forrester Park, north of the city.

Snowfalls appears to be limited to the Dunedin hills.

A Southland farmer said he had "more rain than snow at this stage", but said that could change later on.

Cardrona skifield was benefiting from the conditions - it was covered in fresh snow after receiving a 5cm drop last night and more snow showers today.

There had been one weather-related crash, police said.

A Dunedin police spokesman said the weather was starting to take a turn for the worse, but it hadn't otherwise made much of an impact on traffic just yet.

NZTA had issued ice warnings for the Dunedin - Waitati highway, and had increased their earlier ice warning on State Highway 8 from Fairlie to Cromwell.

Brisk southerly winds will see temperatures plunge, and will likely affect roads and potentially create travel disruptions.

MetService also advised farmers their stock may need to be sheltered.

The Southland Times