NZ Transport Agency is advising commuters that State Highway 1 between Paekakariki to Pukerua Bay remains down to one lane as ongoing emergency repairs continue to the sea protection.
Senior Journey Manager Neil Walker says the damage inflicted by ex-cyclone Gita washed away the cycle-lane, footpath and threatened to undermine the road.
“Firstly, I want to thank road users for their patience. The damage caused long delays in the area and every effort is being made to get the road reopened to two lanes as soon as possible,” Mr Walker says.
“Contractors are working tirelessly to clear debris and reinstate the sea protections. They also have to work very carefully to protect the main fibre connection to the North Island, which has been exposed”
“We have diversion plans in place for southbound light traffic over the Paekakariki Hill Rd and are discouraging northbound traffic from using this road apart from those who live along it.
“Northbound traffic will use the existing State Highway 1 route, but under a temporary reduced speed limit through the damaged section of road.
“Southbound trucks and larger vehicles will be held in stopping areas until afternoon peak traffic flows ease.”
“We understand the frustration some road users may feel, but rest-assured crews are working as quickly as possible to complete the reinstatement and shore up the sea defence along this critical section of SH 1.
Around 14 truckloads of rock from the Transmission Gully Project, estimated to weigh 350 tonnes, have been delivered on site so far by articulated dump-trucks.
“Work is progressing well and will continue into the evening if it remains safe to do so. We will update road users as soon as the work is complete,” Mr Walker says.
All current road closures and warnings will be updated in real time during the storm event at http://www.journeys.nzta.govt.nz/traffic/ (external link) , and drivers can also call 0800 44 44 49 for 24/7 updates on road conditions, closures or delays.
The latest severe weather information is available at http://www.metservice.com/warnings/severe-weather-warnings (external link) . For emergency and disaster updates visit www.civildefence.govt.nz (external link)