Blasting to remove rocks from the Mokau Bluffs on SH3 will begin early next week in an effort to secure access through State Highway 3 between Taranaki and the Waikato.
NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) State Highway Manager Kaye Clark says the NZTA is doing all they can to help prevent further rock falls from closing the highway and posing a hazard to passing motorists.
“Concrete barriers have been put in place to protect road users and prevent further rock falls from encroaching on the highway. Later this week reinforced mesh will be installed above the barriers to reduce the risk of rock falls,” Mrs Clark said.
The road is currently open to one lane, with traffic lights in place. A temporary two lane track is being built alongside the highway to allow traffic in both directions to travel safely past the site. Once the track is complete the traffic lights will be removed and the road will be restored to two lane operation.
Weather permitting rock blasting will be carried out early next week to remove loose rocks from the bluffs. The highway will be closed for short periods to enable the rock blasting to be carried out as safely and quickly as possible.
Mrs Clark says, “Rock blasting is the best way to remove loose rocks, which left alone could pose a risk to passing vehicles.”
Once blasting is complete the site will be reassessed by geotechnical engineers to decide on the best permanent solution for the site.
Mrs Clark thanks motorists for their patience while these works are taking place.