NATIONAL ROUTE 2 (N2) SECTION 24 TO OPEN BEFORE THE WEEKEND OF 15 MAY 2022
Durban, 10 May 2022 – Section 24 of the National Route 2 (N2) Northbound Carriageway between Umzinto and Umgababa which was closed as a result flooding in April is set to reopen, the South African National Roads Agency SOC Limited (SANRAL) has announced.
“The far-left lane on the on the of the N2 on the northern carriageway collapsed and settled by over a meter and moved down the embankment. This resulted in a serious safety issue hence the closure of this section. As a short-term measure, traffic is deviated to the provincial network to the R197 and R102,” said Ravi Ronny.
Speaking during the walkabout on the N2, Minister of Transport Fikile Mbalula said that his department and the provincial government will contribute R5 billion towards the repairs on the road infrastructure in the province.
“On 18 April 2022, on declaring the national state of disaster, President Ramaphosa designated SANRAL as the lead agency to lead the extensive work required to repair roads in the province, starting with an immediate focus on the N2 and N3 freeways. Since then, SANRAL has worked with the provincial and municipal authorities in KwaZulu Natal to advance the rebuilding and rehabilitation work required to restore normality to the lives of the people in the province,” said Minister Fikile Mbalula.
To get the traffic back on the road again, a temporary lane is being constructed to get the northbound carriageway reopened. This will assist in further investigations and getting contractors on to the site to start the construction by the end of May. Construction is estimated to take between six to eight months on this section to be completed.
“When the contractors get on site, they will remove the sunken part of the road and work from bottom up to the top. Generally, these contracts take between 12 and 15 months but we will have an accelerated programme to try and finish in a short as possible time period,” said Ronny.
As a result of the work between SANRAL and the provincial government, a consolidated list of affected infrastructure has been compiled and further assessment on the field is still being undertaken by the SANRAL team of engineers. This has enabled SANRAL and the province to prioritise repairs to road infrastructure where communities were completely cut off and others forced to use the national roads and incur costs.
“Our interventions are multi-faceted, ranging from measures to alleviate the economic impact on road users to rebuilding and rehabilitation of infrastructure. Following the declaration of the state of national disaster, I made a request to the SANRAL board to consider suspending toll fees in seriously affected communities. The board took a resolution to suspend the payment of toll fees at the oThongathi and Mvoti plazas on the N2 toll route. This suspension, at a cost of an estimated R400 million over the 18-month period, is meant to assist communities affected by the closure of alternative routes damaged by the floods,” said Mbalula.