Watch: Giant rock exploded above North Canterbury road video

Hurunui District Council/ facebook

Explosion clears giant rock above road

Explosives have blown away a precarious rock to make a Canterbury country road safe again. 

The Hurunui District Council cleared the rock from above Esk Head Road in Lake Sumner National Park on Wednesday last week. 

The rock was unsafe after the Kaikoura earthquakes shattered it. A council contractor grading the road spotted it in late March.

Explosives were used to clear a cracked and precarious rock above a farm road in Lake Sumner National Park, north Canterbury.
Charlie Gates (CPL)

Explosives were used to clear a cracked and precarious rock above a farm road in Lake Sumner National Park, north Canterbury.

Roading team leader Kushla Tapper said the rock was the size of about five utes.

"A contractor used two packs of explosives to push the rock down," she said.

"It was dangerous because it had fractured behind and below in the earthquakes. We couldn't get it down with the excavator so we nudged it off with explosives and cleared the rocks away afterwards."

The road, which serves one farm, was closed for about five hours during the operation.

The rock split into five large chunks, each the size of a ute, Tapper said.

 

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