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COVID-19 SERVICES UPDATE: Information on Waka Kotahi services

SH73 reopens tonight 8 pm, Springfield to Porter River Bridge

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Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency will reopen the Porter’s Pass/ Arthur’s Pass route between Canterbury and the West Coast tonight at 8 pm. SH73 between Springfield and the Porter River Bridge has been closed since the weekend’s massive downpours damaged bridges and dumped scree over the highway.

"A huge amount of work has taken place to get this highway reopened,” says Barry Stratton, Maintenance Contract Manager, Waka Kotahi for North Canterbury.

“Crews from both the West Coast and Canterbury have worked above and beyond to rebuild the Porter River Bridge’s east and west approaches in particular, in fairly chilly conditions since Sunday,” he says.

“Three bridge approaches – Kowai 1 and 2 and the Porter River Bridge have had to be reconstructed and repaired. We are still working on a hairpin bend on Porter’s Pass where the road washed out. Crews have also cleared more than 100 metres of deep scree and shingle.

“We advise all drivers to take care if driving over Porter’s Pass tonight and in coming days as ice is a real possibility from now on.

“There will be traffic management people on this highway night and day for some time. Please slow down around them and factor in a slower than usual trip from Springfield through to Porter’s Pass with several single lane sections with traffic management,” he says.

“Thanks to all the regular drivers on SH73 who have been taking the Lewis Pass route since the weekend and people living along the route in places like Castle Hill Village, which has had limited access.”

The Porter River Bridge on Sunday.

Repair work under way at the Porter River Bridge earlier this week.

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