Delay in getting falls’ roadwork under way
Work to clear the Diana Falls slip on State Highway 6 between Haast and Makarora has been delayed and the road is not expected to open to two-lanes until mid-year.
NZ Transport Agency senior network manager Mark Pinner said "there have been some delays in getting this work under way as we have worked to finalise what is needed on site, to complete the design, source material and appoint a contractor."
Work was expected to begin early next month at the site which has been reduced to single-lane traffic from 8am to 7pm and closed at night for the last five months.
Heavy rainfall lashed the region in September causing a major slip at the site.
Mr Pinner said a contractor would be appointed within the next couple of weeks to undertake the work which includes installation of a catch fence above the road, a debris fence about onethird of the way up the slip face and the blasting and removal of large rocks that were considered at risk of creating instability at the site.
"At this stage it is expected the works will begin within the next two to three weeks and be completed by the end of May. However, weather will be a significant factor in achieving this date.
"It is likely that additional traffic delays will be needed throughout the day to complete this work, to ensure the safety of motorists travelling through the area and our road crews working at the site," he said.
The agency would provide as much warning as possible about any delays to ensure travellers and business operators can plan their travel through the area.
Mr Pinner says it was not known at this stage how much the work would cost.
"This will not be known until a contractor is appointed and the specific detail of the programme finalised," he said.
Out-ofservice: The huge weather forced slip at Diana Falls in September.