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Post cyclone: Replacing rural infrastructure

After Cyclone Gabrielle, attention was focussed on the the region's key infrastructure, particularly roads and bridges. 

We've seen remarkable work done by engineering and construction companies, as well as the resilience and resourcefulness of our local communities. It's fair to say most people now know what a Bailey bridge is.


But the story that's not so well known is the ongoing struggle out in the back blocks of Hawke's Bay, as many farms remain isolated through damage to smaller bridges connecting them to the rest of the region. In some cases, the situation is critical, as farmers are unable to get their livestock stock off the farm to the market, or easily travel in a medical emergency. 


Lattey Group are currently involved in the repair or replacement of 16 farm bridges throughout the region. These projects are at different stages of the insurance journey, with some moving more quickly than others. Like-for-like replacement may not always be possible due to river course change or river bank scouring, so each case is unique.


Working with structural engineers Create Ltd, Lattey Group design and engineer pile-supported bridges from 10 to 18 metres. Our piling solutions can deliver a bridge at about half the cost of a traditional pier-supported structure. The absence of a central pier also removes a potential debris trap during a flood. 


In addition to being cost effective, our pile supported bridges are relatively quick to construct. In most cases, piling can be done in two days, and the superstructure finished over an additional three.


These bridges are typically rated 0.85HN (previously Class 1), which means they can take a non-frequent 50 ton load and are suitable for rural communities serviced by roads with low traffic volumes.


Lattey Group have mobilised both civil and precast personnel to provide the required resources across the region, with individual projects taking place as far north as Wairoa and as far south as Porongahau.


Learn more about our civil capability here.

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