Highway crews were busy today clearing debris, ready to re-open flooded sections of road once river levels and rainfall subsided this afternoon in Otago and South Canterbury.
Dunedin access SH1 from 4.30pm
Palmerston to the Kilmog north of Dunedin, SH1, will reopen at 4.30 pm today.
Oamaru access from 4pm
SH1 from St Andrews to Glenavy/ the Waitaki Bridge fully reopened just before 4 pm this afternoon. Drivers should be prepared for surface damage and flooding in several places.
There is a short section of SH1 south of the Waitaki River closed due to flooding at Hilderthorpe, (see photo below) however there is a local detour in place via Seven Mile Road so people can get to Oamaru.
Please take care to protect your vehicles and avoid damage
Even after highways have re-opened, people should be ready for slower journeys for some time. “Everyone will need to take care with freshly created potholes in many places,” says Nicole Felts, Journey Manager for Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency.
“Crews have done a huge amount of work today getting these roads safe enough to be opened. Not all drivers have been patient and we understand their frustrations, but these road closures are primarily for their safety.
“There is still a significant amount of surface water, flooding and road surface damage around with many warning signs out.
“Please check our traffic map before you head out so you know where journeys will take longer and require much more care around slips or flooding,” says Miss Felts.
Otago closures due to flooding
SH83 (Duntroon-Georgetown Road) between Black Point and Georgetown/ Smilies Road.
SH1 Pukeuri to Hilderthorpe/Oamaru Airport: Flooding at Hilderthorpe south of the airport has closed this section of SH1 south of the Waitaki River since just before midday today. But there is a local detour via Seven Mile Road which is marked, care required.
SH82, Ikawai to Kurow, closed due to flooding – will be reassessed Thursday morning.