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Roading network still fragile


Road users are being advised additional slipping could occur on Wairoa’s roading network as Council cranks into its roading repair programme.

Work on Wairoa’s weather-damaged roads is underway, but in some cases the slips and ground are still moving, and additional stabilisation work is required.

Council has received nearly $26 million in emergency works funding from Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency and is still awaiting the outcome of its bespoke application for additional funding which could see 100% of the emergency works funded.

Already two of the sites where repair work has been carried out, Hereheretau Road and Ohuka Road, have had further slipping and road restrictions remain in place while the sites are stabilised.

In these cases, the roads were closed to heavy vehicles after further subsidence of dropouts and undermining of banks occurred.

Wairoa District Council Chief Executive Kitea Tipuna said rural people and transport companies need to be aware that as our district has come out of an extremely wet winter, with some areas receiving three times their usual rainfall, and because of the large amount of dropout repair work required throughout Wairoa, the likelihood of further subsidence at dropout sites is likely.

“Safety is our first response, and while we recognise it is inconvenient, there may be more occasions when we have to close roads completely or to heavy vehicles or reduce to single lane. Given the condition of our saturated roading network I am sure people won’t be surprised.”

“There is a lot of roading work to do over the summer construction period and we are focussing on reinstating as much of our network as possible. However, we do need people to please remain patient and be aware that there will be challenges and access may be disrupted.

“We know additional road closures are an inconvenience and we hope there won’t be too many of them, however, given the conditions we are being realistic, and want people to know that further closures could occur.

For any further information please contact the Wairoa District Council on 06 838 7309.

8 December 2022

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