Worse than it looks
The main Lake Waikaremoana road was opened to single-lane traffic on Tuesday afternoon after Quality Roading and Services (QRS) staff safely removed hundreds of tonnes of slip material.
QRS discovered an estimated 300 cubic metres of earth blocking the road 15 kilometres beyond Aniwaniwa during routine checks on Tuesday morning.
Special Purpose Road 38, or State Highway 38, is one of New Zealand's most remote roads.
The 160km winding track curls its way around Lake Waikaremoana and can be approached from Wairoa on the East Coast or Murupara in the Bay of Plenty.
QRS routine maintenance manager Michelle Hedley said photos taken did not show the scale of the dislodged material.
“We'll have to remove an estimated 50 truckloads of slip material before the road can be fully opened to two-way traffic again.”
Road users are advised that work continues in the area and at different times there may be traffic controllers on site.
Ms Hedley praised the QRS work crews involved in the clean-up and thanked the public for their patience and understanding.