Kapiti residents evacuated after torrential rain causes widespread flooding in Wellington

With roads turned into rivers, major highways blocked and trains cancelled, getting home tonight is a major challenge for thousands in the Wellington region. And some of those homes are flooded.

The region was hit by a deluge of rain overnight causing slips and flooding, with 117.4mm falling in Paraparaumu and 96mm in Lower Hutt in the last 24 hours.

Residents are being advised by Civil Defence to stay out of floodwaters because of potential sewage contamination and electrical danger.

Follow the latest updates on road, school and train closures.

State Highway 1 has re-opened but is restricted by flooding. SH2 is closed northbound between Ngauranga and Melling, and southbound at Petone.

Motorists wanting to reach Hutt Valley from Wellington need to use SH1 as far as Porirua and then take SH58 over Haywards Hill. Kapiti residents in Wellington have been advised to seek alternative accommodation in the city.

All commuter train services across the Wellington region have been cancelled and Wellington Railway Station is closed.

Schools, businesses and homeowners have all been affected, with 18 homes evacuated.