Newspaper Article – Gisborne line to open by Saturday

Gisborne line to open by Saturday

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The Napier-Gisborne rail line is expected to re-open on Saturday after being badly hit in last week’s floods.

The line, closed since Thursday, was blocked by 28 slips and at least two large washouts.

However, Tranz Rail’s spokesman Adam McDonald said the company was aiming to complete the repairs by the weekend so the normal goods trains could run between Napier and Gisborne on Saturday and Sunday.

Virtually all the slips have been removed. The largest, of 300 cubic metres, covered the entrance to a tunnel.

There were two significant washouts of about 25-30 metres in length and 10 metres deep in the Kopuawhara area, about 20 km north of Wairoa.

Tranz Rail hoped to have a work train at the site of the first of the dropouts today.

Nearly 450 cubic metres of ballast, washed away mainly in the Muriwai area, has to be replaced.

Mr McDonald said there had been concerns about the extent of flood damage but when the water receded it was not as bad as first feared.

Meanwhile, transport funding agency Transfund is expected to consider a joint application for $500,000 a year for the next five years from Tranz Rail and the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council to keep the line open in September or October.

The council and the company want the line retained until a decision is made on how the East Coast “wall of wood” is to be transported to export ports.

Photo caption – RIGHT: The railway line and bridge near Muriwai, south-west of Gisborne…covered with debris.

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  • Peter Gaston


Hawke's Bay Today


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