Trucks must stop using the Kopaki rail overbridge on SH30
3 Mar 2022, 12:32 PM
Trucks need to stop crossing the weight-restricted Kopaki rail overbridge on State Highway 30 south of Te Kuiti or the bridge will be closed to all traffic.
The ageing timber structure is deteriorating faster than it should because trucks are continuing to use it, despite a maximum weight limit of six tonnes being put in place in late 2021.
“We need trucks to stop using this bridge immediately if we are to keep it open to light traffic until the replacement bridge opens in 2023,” says Waka Kotahi Waikato Regional Manager Operations Rob Campbell.
“Closing the bridge is a last resort as we know this will be a big inconvenience to the local community,” Mr Campbell says.
“However if trucks continue using this bridge we will be forced to close it permanently and that is the scenario we’re trying to avoid.”
“That’s why we’re asking the community and the freight industry to help us spread the word that this bridge can no longer take heavy traffic.”
The replacement overbridge, which will be able to accommodate all heavy traffic, is being built alongside the existing one. It began construction in 2021 and is currently scheduled to open to traffic in April 2023.
Due to its age and condition the existing bridge is being regularly assessed by engineers.
The detour around the bridge is State Highway 4 and Kopaki Road, which adds around 12 kilometres to a trip between Te Kuiti and Maniatiti/Benneydale.
SOURCE: Waka Kotahi - NZTA