New damage to the slip-prone bank at Blue Bluff on Ōtaki Gorge Road after heavy rain is worrying the Kāpiti Coast District Council — and it has temporary closed the area to vehicles.
“I’m asking our community not to attempt to drive through the site or come close to have a look – doing so is a risk to your safety,” says Glen O’Connor, KCDC access manager.
The Blue Bluff is 13km inland from SH1 and the closure affects access to recreational facilities in the Tararua Forest Park — and one private property.
In 2016, a large amount of rocks and soil came off the bank following heavy rain and required the road to be rebuilt over stabilised debris.
“We have discovered significant stress cracks in the road following Wednesday’s heavy rain which is an indication that the material underneath is still moving,” says Glen O’Connor.
“This means further slips are likely and, with the heavy rain forecast for this weekend.
“We’re not taking any chances with our community’s safety. We have temporarily closed the road to all vehicles.
“Geotechnical specialists have been onsite today and will undertake further investigative works next week before we make a decision on our next steps.”