1 Sep 2008

Alternative transport for Kawakawa Bay residents

8:12 pm on 1 September 2008

Manukau City Council is organising free ferry and bus services for the residents of Kawakawa Bay.

A large slip on the verge of collapse has forced the closure of the main access road.

Five houses below the slip and one above the slip have been evacuated.

The council says the slip is still moving and the hillside could come down at any time, along with thousands of tonnes of earth. It says people do not realise the extreme danger posed by the landslip.

The council's economic director, Rick Walden, says it is impossible to know when the hillside might collapse.

About 1500 people living in the east coast area now have to take an alternative route to Auckland city, which adds 90 minutes to the journey.

The council started a ferry service from Kawakawa Bay to Pine Harbour marina on Monday morning. An additional bus service is also being provided.

Children who normally attend Clevedon School will start classes at Orere School.

Main access road closed

The council on Friday blocked vehicle access to the area and removed workmen from the site for their own safety.

It also expressed concern about people walking along the foreshore road despite warnings to stay away. It says the hillside looks deceptively calm but is very unstable.

The council expects the road to be closed for up to a month.