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NZTA aiming to reopen Manawatu Gorge early next week


The NZ Transport Agency is advising motorists that the Manawatu Gorge is likely to remain closed until early next week.

Regional state highways manager David McGonigal said the massive slip, which came down on Thursday night last week, had left a large scar in the hillside and would need a few more days to clear.

The NZTA was aiming to have the road reopened to one lane on Monday, but that was dependant on the stability of the hillside.

“As the slip is cleared more debris is coming down, which has made it one of the most challenging slips we’ve dealt  with. We appreciate it’s a headache for the motorists and truckies that rely on this route, and our top priority is to get the road open safely as soon as possible.”

Mr McGonigal thanked its contractor Higgins for its hard work clearing the slip, which has involved removing an estimated 12,000 cubic metres of debris so far.

“Our contractors have extensive experience in managing slips in the gorge, and they’re doing a superb job in a very tricky location.”

Motorists can use the Pahiatua Track and the Saddle Road as alternative routes.

Motorists can check the latest information on highway conditions, delays and closures at link), or by calling 0800 4 HIGWHAYS (0800 44 44 49).