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Line to Greymouth re-opens


KiwiRail has re-opened the section of line at Omoto near Greymouth allowing the TranzAlpine to resume full operations.

"A locomotive travelled over the section of line yesterday, and we have scheduled the TranzAlpine to run through to Greymouth today," South Island General Manager Operations Jeanine Benson says.

The line at Omoto had been closed since October because of a slip.

"We now have the line open for trains again. We will continue working to provide a long-term solution to prevent this type of slip happening again.

"The situation has been frustrating for all those involved, and we appreciate the impact it has had.
"Staff have worked hard to get both the rail and the road open again as quickly as possible, but the fix was a complex one.

"We needed to come up with a way of removing water from the slip site."

Since the slip the TranzAlpine has been running between Christchurch and Arthur's Pass, with passengers bussed between there and Greymouth.

KiwiRail Head of Tourism and Marketing Ah-Leen Rayner says "this is a spectacular journey, and the TranzAlpine is a highlight for many travellers both from New Zealand and from overseas.
"I am delighted that we are now able to travel all the way from Christchurch to Greymouth, and once again offer our passengers the full experience."

The same slip had also closed the road, but it has now re-opened as well.

Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency reopened the section of state highway east of Greymouth through Omoto on Monday around 6 pm.

"Road users no longer need to take the Taylorville detour route," says Transport Agency Maintenance Contract Manager Moira Whinham. "But they should expect short delays as the highway through Omoto is just one lane with traffic signal management and that will be the case for some time."

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