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Roading Update - Repairs To Kenepuru Road And Queen Charlotte Drive ‘will Take Months’

The assessment of damage to the Kenepuru Road is on-going by Marlborough Roads and it is likely to be many months before it is fully open, Marlborough’s Recovery Manager Dean Heiford says.

“We might be able to clear some sections of the road more quickly. However, full connectivity will not be possible for quite some time.”

“There are six areas of major damage on Queen Charlotte Drive between Picton and Linkwater, a large number of slips between Linkwater and Havelock, including a major landslide at Pukenui, and 17 slips and drop outs on the Kenepuru Road. It is a huge challenge.”

“The stability of the soil and rock around the slips, washouts and underslips is our key concern. We are not willing to put vehicles on unstable ground and put people's lives at risk. We are also mindful that the ground is saturated and any further rain over winter will exacerbate any weaknesses in soil and rock stability.”

“Connecting Havelock to Moenui is probably a shorter timeframe than Kenepuru Road; however that road has also sustained very serious damage at Cullen Point and we need to ensure that any access through here is safe.

“The Sounds’ road network is quite fragile at the best of times; maintaining it is expensive and resource intensive, even without a major storm.”

“All this means that people who live in the Central Sounds area may have to make changes to the way they live and work for the next few months. There is no way around this I'm afraid. I ask residents for their patience and understanding.”

“Some people may have to relocate to friends or family for the time being. If people are unable to remain in their home they may be able to receive support from the Temporary Accommodation Service provided by the Government through MBIE - call 0508 754 163.”

Awatere Valley Road

The first crews have arrived on site to begin work to repair the road. A large underslip has taken out the road 46.5km up. There are numerous other slips further up the road. From SH1 the road is open as far as McRae Stream. There was further damage to the road near Limestone Bridge following rain on 26 July. The road has been inspected by engineers, rock scaling has been completed and road reinstatement works can now start.

Waihopai Valley road

The temporary Bailey bridge is expected to arrive next Tuesday. There will then be three weeks on preparation and construction before the bridge is installed. Bridge abutments are being constructed and planning around the bridge’s installation is underway by engineers.

Other road status changes

Wairau Bar Road east of the Ferry Bridge is now open – please drive with extreme caution. Jones Road in Grovetown has also reopened.

For the most up-to-date information about road closures and the state of your local road, please visit the Council’s Marlborough Emergency Management Official Public Information Map which is regularly updated at https://bit.ly/CDEM-Map

The Council’s website now has a dedicated Recovery page. Go to https://www.marlborough.govt.nz/civil-defence-emergency-management/flooding-july-2021/july-2021-storm-event-recovery-information

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