10 Jul 2010

'Hillside' blocking road north of Gisborne

8:49 am on 10 July 2010

A resident near the site of a landslide north of Gisborne said on Friday a 13-metre high chunk of hillside, with grass and trees still on top, was blocking the road.

More than 20,000 cubic metres of soil tumbled slipped at Anaura Bay, about 85 kilometres north of Gisborne, on Thursday, cutting off 20 homes on Anaura Bay Rd and at Nuiti Beach.

Three families living permanently at the Anaura Bay settlement can get in and out be vehicle only at low-tide, by driving along the beach, although residents can walk around the debris.

Anaura Bay Motor Camp manager Jack Russell says the landslide is the biggest he's ever seen.

Local man Tama Papuni says earth is still coming down, and it will be a tricky job to for council contractors to shift it.

Gisborne District Council says it could take two days to provide temporary vehicle access.

Contractors started making a track across the top of the slip on Friday and council roading manager Dave Hadfield if that doesn't work, the alternative is to try to make a track across private land.