It will be months before the key route across east Oahu is completely reopened after rockslides last month, and these images show you why.
The Pali Highway, typically the main route between Honolulu and Kailua, was heavily damaged by rockslides last month. On Friday, members of the media got a closer look. Here, construction workers remove boulders and debris in the Honolulu- bound lands.
Equipped with a warning horn, spotter Bastian Goelz of Prometheus Construction watches for falling rocks along Old Pali Road.
Strong winds and unstable ground make the work more difficult on Old Pali Road. As for the highway, it’s currently only open for two contra-flow lanes of Honolulu-bound traffic from 5 to 9 a.m. weekdays, and for all lanes of Kailua/Kaneohe-bound traffic from 3 to 7 p.m. weekdays.
Workers rappel down the damaged slope alongside Old Pali Road with a view of the highway below.
Plans call for first installing a mesh barrier on the slope of Old Pali Road to catch falling debris. Then workers will build a new structure extending the second Honolulu-bound tunnel by about 80 feet.
On Friday, a huge rock pile still blocked the entrance to one of the Honolulu-bound Pali tunnels on the highway.
The Department of Transportation wants to guard against future rockslides by installing mesh barriers, including in this area near a Kailua-bound tunnel.
The winds are so strong atop the Pali Highway that workers had to get creative to anchor a portable toilet.