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Raglan disruptions as the weather caused damage comes to light

Surf Beach carpark, now a gully requiring extensive work (Photo supplied)

Praneeta Mahajan
Hamilton, 2 February 2023

Raglan is Waikato’s escape destination that always provides welcoming views of the beach, sunshine and some great food, music and community vibes that are unique to the town. But many plans would now have to be reworked as Raglan disruptions emerge just with the weather conditions easing out for the day.

Waikato district’s Emergency Operations Centre Controller Kurt Abbot said that crews are still working to establish the extent of damage in the area.

He said, “Whaanga Road, which is used to access Ruapuke Beach from the north, is closed due to multiple slips and a large fallen tree. Crews are working to clear the slips. We are still working to assess the scale of the damage at the car park, but it is significant.”

Elsewhere in the Waikato district, the restoration of roads and infrastructure continues. Most of the damage is concentrated in the northern part of the region, said Waikato District Council.

Since Tuesday, 31 January, road closures were in place at five sites, the corner of Miranda and Findlay roads due to flooding, Murray Rd near Tuakau which was blocked due to a slip, Whaanga Road south of Raglan, Te Papatapu Road near Raglan and Waikaretu Road at Port Waikato was open only to vehicles with a high clearance because of a depression in the road surface.

Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency had advised yesterday evening (1 February) that State Highway 23 (SH23) would close to all traffic overnight from 7 pm onwards due to the severity of cracking and slumping on the highway west of Glentui Lane.

Cara Lauder, Waka Kotahi System Manager for the Waikato said, “We have been doing everything we can to keep this road open but a geotechnical inspection late this afternoon has confirmed the risk to the travelling public has increased. Despite our best efforts to keep water out of the cracks, the fissures are growing. To keep the public safe, Waka Kotahi will close State Highway 23 at Glentui from 7 pm to 7 am tonight and re-assess first thing tomorrow morning.”

As of Thursday morning (2 February 2023) the route was still closed.

Surf Beach carpark, now a gully requiring extensive work (Photo supplied)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ms Lauder said, “We understand how important the highway is to locals in Raglan, but our priority must be to act as quickly as necessary to keep everyone safe.”

Under traffic management, contractors had earlier moved the live lane further away from the problem area. And worked on applying cold mix asphalt to the cracks along with an asphalt bund that was added to direct road water flow away to prevent further damage, however, it has not been enough to stop it from getting worse.

The detour route is as follows: Ohautira Road, Waingaro Road, Herschel Street, Ellery Street, Whatawhata Avenue, Ngaruawahia Road, and Horotiu Road to rejoin SH23. Caution is advised on the detours as they are tight, winding roads.

Praneeta Mahajan is an Indian Newslink correspondent based in Hamilton.

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