NATION

Transport Infrastructure Repairs To Cost $135m

Fiji Roads Authority (FRA) transport infrastructure suffered severe damage with the Tropical Cyclone Winston covering extensive areas of Fiji Islands with repairs estimated to cost $135 million. FRA maintenance works
12 Mar 2016 12:45
Transport Infrastructure Repairs To Cost $135m
FRA

Fiji Roads Authority (FRA) transport infrastructure suffered severe damage with the Tropical Cyclone Winston covering extensive areas of Fiji Islands with repairs estimated to cost $135 million.

FRA maintenance works manager Aram Goes said the initial response to clear existing access to villages by road took only 14 days.

“While that was a tremendous effort by the numerous contractors working very long hours, many still remain only suitable for 4-Wheel Drive access,” Mr Goes said. “There are still some roads which needs long detours – however villages and schools are accessible for delivery of rations, medical supplies and evacuees among needs.”

He said of the 7500km of road network, up to 2000km of these had to be painstakingly cleared of fallen trees and debris during hazardous conditions, surrounded by fallen (and in many cases still live) power lines.

“In addition all jetties were restored for some form of access within 10 days of the event – with roll-on-roll-off priority achieved in this timeframe for the critical Nabouwalu, Savusavu and Waiyevo Jetties,” Mr Goes said.

Mr Goes said costs to provide this urgent immediate land and sea access was currently estimated to be between $10-15 million.

“This includes the ongoing works in progress to clear out road drains from remaining tree debris and re-gravel roads weakened by the storm,” Mr Goes said.

“Over five bridges, 26 crossings and eight jetties are currently identified as requiring more permanent repairs that will take several years to complete.”

He said this would be at an estimated cost of $80 million but these structures would be designed to improve in resilience in future cyclone events.

“Across the Fiji Islands an unknown number of landslides and dropouts along roads are currently being assessed and quantified by the engineers,” he said.

Mr Goes said this included up to 50km of coastal roads suffering from washout damage on the Islands of Vanua Levu, Taveuni, Koro and Vanuabalavu.

He said these road washouts and landslide restoration works were broadly estimated to cost $40 million.

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