Issued 1145 Sunday 29 January
Over the past 36 hours our road maintenance teams have put in a mammoth effort across the Auckland region to help reopen roads and manage damage to our infrastructure. Our public transport service providers across bus, ferry and rail have put in huge work to maintain as many services operating against timetables as possible – a huge call out of thanks to our bus drivers acknowledging the situations they found themselves in on Friday evening as they took customers home.
Because of the hard work of our maintenance teams yesterday and overnight we have been able to reopen a number of significant roads and intersections across the region, such as Wiri Station Road and Mill Road in the south, and Victoria Street in the city centre.
As at 0900 this morning there are still more than 39 roads closed across the region, with eight more having lane closures. Although we anticipate this number to drop significantly in coming days some roads will take longer due to the scale of the slips and damage caused on Friday.
On the public transport front our AT Metro team has been working closely with our bus and ferry operators to restore services, with buses and ferries running today to their usual Sunday timetables. Train services are not running today because of KiwiRail’s closure of the rail network this weekend, but rail replacement buses are operating. Stranded and flooded buses have been progressively recovered, checked and where necessary repairs underway. Three bus depots were flooded and these have been progressively restored to operations.
We have been working closely with KiwiRail and our rail operator Auckland One Rail to plan for how we can safely begin running train services from Tuesday onwards.
Because there are large slips on the Western and Eastern Lines, there are likely to be changes to timetables from Tuesday. We are expecting to be able to run some reduced services on both these lines, however it’s likely that the Meadowbank Station will be closed and that passengers on the Western Line will need to transfer between trains at New Lynn. We will be releasing more detailed information about train disruptions and timetables this afternoon.
Auckland Transport and Waka Kotahi continues to jointly operate an Incident Management Response Team from the Auckland Transport Operations Centre and we will continue to provide regular updates through all media and customer information channels, to ensure Aucklanders have the most up to date information on road closures and public transport services.
Finally, I want to thank Auckland’s bus drivers, ferry crews, train staff, and road maintenance crews for their extraordinary work and dedication over the past few days.
Because of their fantastic efforts to get people home safely on Friday and to help get Auckland moving again on Saturday, our city is in a much better position than it would otherwise be.
These public transport staff and roading crews work in challenging roles, but over the past 48 hours they have shown us all just how vital they are for all Aucklanders. They have gone above and beyond and will be remembered as some of the heroes of this flood.
Public transport situation report
- Normal bus operations are expected today, with services operating usual Sunday timetables, noting that there are many detours of routes still in place due to road closures that will add extra travel time and cause some services to be operating later than timetabled.
- The Northern Busway is fully operational with yesterday’s speed restrictions now lifted.
- Services to Warkworth have resumed now that SH1 from Puhoi to Warkworth has reopened.
- No train services are running because of this weekend’s KiwiRail and City Rail Link rail network closure.
- Ambassadors are at the rail bus stops at Britomart, Newmarket and Otahuhu assisting customers.
- Rail Bus Replacements are operating on all lines.
- Services on the Southern, Western and Eastern lines are expected to run to reduced timetables from Tuesday to allow KiwiRail to carry out repairs on the tracks. Detailed information about train services operating from Tuesday will be shared later.
- Flooded underpasses are progressively opening yesterday and today and pumping flood water from Britomart Station continues.
- All ferry services except Rakino are operating as usual today, with trips on the Hobsonville/Beach Haven route having resumed this morning. Ferries are busier than expected this morning.
- The Majestic Princess cruise ship is docked at Princes Wharf and is expected to leave Auckland at 1805. Vessels of this size take some time to leave the pier and the ship’s departure may impact some ferry movements to/from the Downtown Ferry Terminal this evening.
Road network situation report
There are currently 39 roads closed across the Auckland region, with lanes closed on a further 8 roads. For the latest list of road closures please see the AT website.
The most severely affected areas and current areas of focus are:
- East: South Eastern Highway SEART offramp: Water will be pumped out today and submerged / damaged vehicles need to be towed.
- West: Scenic Drive remains fully closed around #412. The slip is still moving and we are expecting to be able to confirm as soon as possible when work is able to be undertaken effectively to open as soon as possible.
- North: The Mill Flat Road bridge in Riverhead was washed out; an alternative route through the Riverhead Forest is available with multiple options are being considered for restoring access along the road including urgent replacement of the bridge. The Puhoi Ahurua Road area has been cleared of rubbish however the road cannot be opened to pavement degradation; further assessments are underway; East Coast Bays: preventative work has been completed and will continue in order to support the best outcomes for the infrastructure to handle high volume of rain.
- South: Mill Road / Redoubt Road intersection and Wiri Station Road south closures have ended and the roads are now fully open.
- City Centre: The sinkhole on Victoria Street has been downgraded to low risk given our investigations and mitigations put in place.