Bells Line of Road in the Blue Mountains, NSW was hit with the heavy rainfall in late March.
This resulted in extensive damage at Mount Tomah, with reports of landslips on Bells Line of Road and a large portion of damaged pavement west of Mount Tomah.
This damage resulted in the closure of Bells Line of Road between Mt Wilson Road and Berambing for approximately two weeks, including the Easter long weekend, until the safety risk was reduced sufficiently to consider at least partial re-opening for emergency services or local access.
DM Roads crews and specialist Supply Chain Partners worked tirelessly with Transport for NSW (TfNSW) to assess the condition of the road and to provide a timeline for traffic to return.
Ground penetrating radar was used to confirm the condition of the asphalt subgrade in areas affected by water flow, and a drone was used to generate a photogrammetry model to determine the extent of the fissure that caused the main landslip in the slope above Bells Line of Road. The attendance and timely safety inspection by our crews ensured safe access for local residents and businesses throughout the duration of the full road closure.
Crews from DM Roads and the team from TfNSW worked hard to ensure the road was able to be reopened as soon as possible, with pavement remediation and temporary concrete and water-filled plastic barriers installed around the slope failures to facilitate returning traffic.
Many trees had been removed on the failed slopes to improve the safety for road users, with safety patrols continuing to ensure public safety. Additional measures from TfNSW include live CCTV monitoring of any changes in slope condition, which has assisted the ongoing risk management at the failure sites.
The affected sections of Bells Line of Road were reopened to traffic on the afternoon of Saturday 10 April with two sets of temporary traffic signals in place and a reduced speed limit to manage the traffic safely around areas of concern.
Well done to all DM Roads staff that have been working tirelessly throughout this period, with a special thanks to Jason Jones, Steve Flint, Ralf Schramm, Sarah Cooney, Jason Steele and a great number of people across the Maintenance and Asset Inspection Teams as well as our incredible Supply Chain and our colleagues at TfNSW Sydney Maintenance.