Damaged Suspension Bridge to Reopen After Repairs

26 June 2017

The historic Bertrand Road Bridge is expected to reopen by the middle of next month.

The bridge was damaged on 20 May when an oversized truck drove onto it and damaged the running planks, decking boards and handrails. The bridge has been closed for inspections since then. 

Fortunately, these inspections have shown that no serious damage has been done to the structure of the bridge and its supports.

As well as making repairs, the Council will replace the existing traffic bollards – which were in place to allow bridge access to only light vehicles – with larger ones. 

“Over the years the previous bollards had been nudged aside as bigger vehicles tried their luck,” says Infrastructure Manager David Langford.

“As well as bringing in these larger bollards we’ll install four more – two on either side – 10m away from the bridge as an additional warning to drivers.

“This is a historic suspension bridge and it’s important that road users respect it. When it reopens, it will be for pedestrians, cyclists, motorbikes and light vehicles only.”

The repairs will cost about $60,000, with the company that employed the truck driver paying the bill.

The Bertrand Road Bridge crosses the Waitara River and connects the communities of Huirangi and Tikorangi. 

It was closed in 1985 to vehicles and in 2004 to pedestrians due to safety concerns, then was reopened in 2016 after the Bertrand Road Suspension Bridge Trust raised $630,000 to have it restored.