Barrier inspections across the Remutaka Hill. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

ARTHUR HAWKES
arthur.hawkes@age.co.nz

A month’s worth of essential roadworks were carried out on the Remutaka Hill road overnight on Sunday, having been postponed earlier in the year due to extreme weather.

More than 30 New Zealand Transport Agency staff along with several contractors were on State Highway 2 into the early hours of Monday morning completing various works.

Two crash hot spots were also investigated – bridge six and bridge seven – with a view to improve options to prevent them being hit by logging trucks.

NZTA regional transport systems manager Mark Owen said if it were not for the one-night full closure, the tasks the crew carried out would have resulted in about 40 separate stop/go closures during the day.

“Sunday night’s work effectively saved Remutaka Hill road users 40 days of travel disruption.”

The work completed involved several important tasks.

Barrier inspections were undertaken across the length of the hill from Upper Hutt to Featherston to check for damage and potential safety upgrades.

Culvert inspections were carried out, to ensure free drainage in the culvert pipes under the road.

Weeds were sprayed along the 6km length from the start of the closure on the Hutt side to the summit.

Drainage channels were cleared over 9km, from the closure on the Featherston side to the summit, which included the clearing of two blocked drains on the Featherston side.

The culvert sock on the half bridge was renewed [a culvert sock is like a slide fitted over the culvert outlet to guide water down and prevent erosion].

It was fitted to the culvert outlet where a corner was widened three years ago, 3.5km north of the summit.

Trees were also cleared on the Hutt side to protect an 11kV cable, as well as drainage channel improvements.