Care needed as trains start to run
13 April 2017 11:11AM
KiwiRail and NCTIR have reconnected the Main North Line between Christchurch and Ferniehurst so that massive work trains can help finish the repair.
“The damaged section of rail line, including major bridges, has been made ready to take the 1000 tonne plus ballast and ‘tamper’ trains to complete the repair.
“The earthquake-damaged Main North Line has been a huge challenge for KiwiRail and NCTIR crews to repair and this scale of rail reconnection hasn't happened here since the lines were built” says KiwiRail Group General Manager Network Services Todd Moyle.
“Several bridges, culverts and large areas of the railway embankment needed serious repair. This is a difficult job in the narrow rail corridor and they now have been repaired on the track between Waipara and Ferniehurst, just north of Cheviot.
“The next phase will be to replace the huge amount of ballast shaken loose during the quake, and then tamps it.
“It does mean that the public and KiwiRail’s neighbours will need to be careful around level crossings again. Hi-rail vehicles - trucks that go on rail - and work supply trains will be moving up and down the line constantly. We should all treat the corridor as ‘live’”.
“All those travelling in the area need to take care on both the road and rail as we come into winter, as the entire transport corridor between Blenheim and Waipara is a rail and road construction site.
“We’re pleased with the progress we’re making. Getting to this point means the thousands of hours of design and construction work by the crews has paid off,” Todd Moyle says.
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