Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency’s recent monitoring and data analysis of the Ashburton River/Hakatere Bridge shows that it is safe to take trucks (up to 50MAX and High Productivity Motor Vehicles - HPMV) around the clock as of today, says Pete Connors, System Manager for Waka Kotahi.
“This is good news for truck drivers who have had much longer than normal routes around Ashburton for the past week after 7 pm and before 7 am since the drop in one bridge pier became visible after the recent floods.”
Freight vehicles have been restricted to daylight hours for the past week. Light traffic has had 24/7 access since the initial day’s closure.
The speed limit on the SH1 bridge will remain at 30km/ hour.
Overweights still no go
Overweight permit vehicles cannot use the bridge.
Timeline for repair
Mr Connors estimates repairs could be completed in the next six to eight weeks. “If we have more high river events, that could affect that timeline, but we are working as fast as we can to expedite this repair.”
Closure next Wednesday night, 11 pm, 16 June to 1 am, 17 June
Waka Kotahi has another night of monitoring and data analysis next week which will involve a two-hour closure 11 pm to 1 am, Wednesday night to Thursday morning.
“During this closure we will also be installing electronic monitoring equipment to allow remote monitoring of the structure,” says Mr Connors.
Waka Kotahi thanks all bridge users for their patience over the past week as this investigation got underway and traffic management for everyone’s safety was put in place.
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