The NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) says it will be Thursday, 18 October before the section of the Milford Road between Falls Creek and Monkey Creek that was closed by a massive slip last Friday night is re-opened to traffic.
NZTA Area Manager Peter Robinson says while over half of the slip has been cleared the weather forecast for the next 24 hours includes heavy rain that is likely to delay work. Another factor in extending the re-opening to Thursday is to allow time to ensure the single lane through the slip is secure enough to be used by a wider variety of vehicles.
“The slip had covered about 200m of road and included rock as large as 500 tonnes. Earlier reports of 200 tonnes were on the conservative side. The largest rock shown in images widely used in the media has now been successfully blasted and cleared away along with several smaller rocks.”
Peter Robinson says among the equipment being used to clear the slip are drilling rigs and two large excavators. Recommendations from geotechnical experts who inspected the main slip are being followed to ensure the safety of workers. It could be some time before the cost of this work is known Mr Robinson said.
There will be a further update on the slip at midday on Wednesday, 17 October. The latest information on the slip is available at www.highwayinfo.govt.nz(external link).
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