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Route 52 badly damaged

A major washout on Route 52 between Alfredton and Tiraumea. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

By Chelsea Boyle

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Last week’s wild weather badly damaged Route 52 in two places closing the road over the weekend and directly affecting about 50 households.

A culvert was washed out on the road between Alfredton and Tiraumea after last week’s polar blast.

Further north, serious damage was also done to a bridge abutment between Weber Rd and Wimbledon Rd.

The road remained closed on Monday along with eight other Tararua District roads, a further four were closed to heavy vehicles.

Tararua District Council Acting Chief Executive Peter Wimsett said it was a significant inconvenience to many people in the area and would be addressed with urgency.

“Any repairs will need to minimise potential damage from further storms,” he said.

“The locations are susceptible to further erosion, which also needs to be addressed when we consider temporary or permanent solutions.”

Slips continued on Monday, even though the weather was fine, likely due to moisture continuing to penetrate the ground, he said.

“That’s probably still going to continue.

“We are concerned about the rainfall that is predicted… later in the week it is going to be more serious, but we shall see.

“We are looking out for that, in the meantime work crews are out doing as much as they can.”

The brief was simply “open roads, make them safe,” he said.

They were hoping to open all roads by the end of the week, he said.

In the meantime, people should keep calling in slips as they see them, he said.

Tararua Alliance Manager Chris Chapman said the weather over last Thursday and Friday caused significant damage to roads across the district.

“Over 100 customer requests were received and processed over a 24-hour period and several hundred faults have been identified, including surface flooding, slips, dropouts, and full road washouts.

“Roads were closed and the Tararua Alliance has many crews, including subcontractors, working hard to make roads safe where possible.”


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