Information on the use of Bailey Bridges as part of the Cyclone Gabrielle recovery.

We maintain New Zealand's civil emergency bridging stock – Bailey bridges. The Bailey bridge ‘kit set’ systems are ideal for use in emergency situations (such as when bridges collapse or are washed out) and as temporary structures for planned events such as roading projects and movie shoots.

Developed by the British during the Second World War, Bailey bridges remain a cost-effective system, being versatile and relatively quick and easy to build and dismantle. With a basic component of a 3-metre-long truss panel, they can be configured to provide much longer spans and cater for a wide range of loads.

Need a Bailey bridge?

We offer a complete Bailey bridge design, build, maintenance and transport service for contractors, roading agencies and private contractors. 

Contact us for more information about the Bailey bridge service and charges.

If you need the service urgently, please contact Nigel Lloyd on 021 729 341.

Why use a Bailey bridge?

Bailey bridges have been used around the world for the past 70 years for uses such as:

  • replacing collapsed bridges (between 3-metres and 200-metres long)

  • restoring access to roads washed out in storms

  • providing cost-effective temporary structures for roading projects

  • providing minor stream crossings for movie locations and other non-emergency situations.

Bailey bridge service: before

Bailey bridge service: before

Bailey bridge service: after

Bailey bridge service: after

How long does it take to put up?

A standard bridge (30-metres long, single span) can be assembled within a week. Longer-span bridges may take longer owing to the need to build piers to support them.

How does the Bailey bridge service work?

We have extensive experience in Bailey bridge design, construction, maintenance, dismantling and transportation. This means we can offer a prompt, efficient service at short notice – especially in emergencies - and provide a wide range of Bailey bridge options.

How much does it cost?

All hirers are required to pay for Bailey bridge transport, construction and dismantling, monthly hire and inspections. The service is run on a not-for-profit basis, with hire charges used to pay for the components' storage and maintenance. Local authorities needing to use Bailey bridges on public roads in emergencies can apply to us for financial help.

We operate a standard agreement with all hirers.

Read the hire agreement [PDF, 149 KB]

For more information

View the Bailey bridge video gallery

Read our Bailey bridge service factsheet [PDF, 1.1 MB]

Questions and answers about Bailey bridges

Contact us for more information about the Bailey bridge service and charges.

In emergencies

Call Nigel Lloyd at Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency on 021 729 341. If Nigel is not available, please call:

  • Joel Netley, Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency on 021 882 521

  • James Paston, Downer on 06 835 5789 or 027 232 5946 (North Island only)

  • Daniel Helm, Downer on 027 807 8065 (South Island only).