Tuapeka Mouth ferry back in service

The Tuapeka Mouth ferry. Photo by Rachel Taylor
The Tuapeka Mouth ferry. Photo by Rachel Taylor
The Tuapeka Mouth Ferry, which has been out of action since mid-January, has resumed service.

The ferry, also called the Tuapeka Mouth Punt, is funded by the Clutha District Council is treated much like a bridge. Use of the ferry is free.

Operation of the ferry was initially suspended on January 10 due to flooding and high flows on the Clutha River.

The suspension was extended as a result of damage to the ramp anchor point on the Tuapeka Mouth side.

Repairs and other planned maintenance to the ferry were then prioritised under the council's bridge repairs contract, which was awarded to SouthRoads in February.

The contract included repair and maintenance work to the ferry, including replacing the timber deck and handrails on both ramps, replacing steel beams on one ramp and construction of a new anchor system.

The Tuapeka Mouth Ferry is about 30km northwest of Balclutha. It normally crosses the Clutha River daily between 8am and 10am, and 4pm and 6pm.

Permissible loads are dependent on river conditions and are at the discretion of the operator on the site.

The historic punt is mainly used as a tourist attraction, but some locals use it on a regular basis.

The New Zealand Transport Agency funds 60% of the punt's costs.

- ODT Online

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