The inland road (Route 70) into Kaikōura via Waiau and Mt Lyford was reopened this morning and it may be the sole route in and out of the town for some days, says the NZ Transport Agency.
The Kaikōura Coast was one of the places most significantly affected by Cyclone Gita with several large slips and rockfalls now blocking the road both north and south of the town.
“Work to clear these slips will take several days at least,” says Tim Crow, Earthquake Recovery Manager for the Transport Agency. “Multiple crews are working up and down the coast and on the Hundalees south of Oaro. A temporary, emergency access has been provided to residents of Oaro while the slips are being cleared.”
Rainfall was extreme in some places – more than 200 mm in 24 hours, and one site, Rosy Morn, south of Kaikōura, (site of previous slips), reported 302 mm of rain in 24 hours yesterday.
Maximum wind gusts yesterday evening were around 100 km/h on the coast.
“We will be doing our best to restore State Highway 1as soon as possible and get the North Canterbury Transport Infrastructure Recovery team’s earthquake rebuild work back on track,” says Mr Crow.
“We encourage all people using the inland road to build in extra time and patience as there will be crews along that route also for some time.”
North side of Kaikōura looking back over slips:
New slip south of Ohau Point, north side of Kaikōura:
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