KiwiRail workers are set to end the weekend with only 10 kilometres of rail on the Picton to Christchurch line still needing the repairs that will allow work trains and tampers to operate over the whole length of the line.
“Those 10 km include some of the toughest jobs in rebuilding the railway after the November 2016 earthquake but we are getting there,” says KiwiRail Group General Manager Network Services Todd Moyle.
“The next target is to have work trains being able to operate on the whole length of the 348 km line. Having work trains operating on the line will be a significant achievement in itself and is a key step in getting the Main North Line re-opened for freight services.
“We are unable to put a firm date on the re-opening yet, but we will get the freight trains running again as quickly as is safely possible.
“The Main North Line railway between Picton and Christchurch is a critical part of the network for moving freight between the North and South Islands.
“Before the earthquake, more than 1 million tonnes of freight was moved on the MNL each year.”
“As part of getting the job done safely, people need to be aware there are work trains and other vehicles using the line, and take care around the rail corridor.
“The dedication and skill of the KiwiRail workers, and the partnerships we have in the North Canterbury Transport Infrastructure Recovery alliance with NZTA, means we are getting the job done,” says Mr Moyle.