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Progress on Roads, but Major Problems Remain

Progress on Roads, but Major Problems Remain

Contractors have pushed through the major slip on Arakihi Road, inland of Tolaga Bay to find another slip on West Ho Road. Arakihi, West Ho, Kiore and Rangikohua roads remain closed.

Tairawhiti Roads journey manager Helen Harris said this afternoon that the remaining roads are closed due to slips, debris, road scours, silt and sludge, a collapsed retaining wall, culverts jammed with debris, and bridges that still need assessing. Engineers are progressively assessing these bridges. In some cases, the underside of the bridges cannot be assessed because there is no access underneath.

Tairaiwhiti Civil Defence Emergency manager Louise Bennett said that while road closures might be frustrating for residents, it was a matter of safety first.

The public is urged not to go sightseeing. The roads are closed for good reasons. There is a tremendous amount of debris, sludge, silt, slash and debris on the roads. Contractors don’t know what is underneath the sludge on the road.

The trucking industry has been informed of all road closures and are using the Hokoroa and Fernside routes to carry on their business.

Heavy rain forecast from 9pm tonight through to 3am tomorrow south of Te Puia Springs could cause further issues in the rain-soaked wider Tolaga Bay region.

A severe weather watch has been issued for an active cold front this evening, bringing heavy rain and significant snowfall for the southern Gisborne area above about 500 metres.

This could see the Hikuwai, Waimata and Waipaoa rivers all rise several metres. Civil Defence and council’s flood warning team will be monitoring the situation overnight.

Anaura Bay, Kaiaua, Waihau Bay, Pa, Waiomoko, Panikau and Andrews roads are now open. Arakihi, West Ho, Kiore,Paroa, Glenroy, Tauwhareparae, Takapau, Rangikohua and Mangatokerau roads remain closed.

Power is now back on for all residents which means they will also have telephone contact again.


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