EHP police warn people not to use Okuk Highway

National, Normal

POLICE in Eastern Highlands province warned the travelling public along the Okuk Highway to stop traveling until further notice.
Eastern Highlands provincial police commander Chief Superintendent Augustine Wampe issued the warning yesterday after the collapse of a section of the Highway in Henganofi.
He said police would be at the affected site at Narazate creek at Korokoreate section of the Okuk Highway to protect commuters and other Highway users, but advised travelling public not to travel at this time.
“Police manpower is stretched to the limit and it is advisable for travelling public not to travel along the highway at this time of the rainy period,” he said.
Chief Supt Wampe added that since he issued the warning, the public should adhere to the warning and avoid making unnecessary travels so as to avoid unwarranted law and order situations.
“Trucking firms must also take extra precautions, all the services into the Highlands region is cut off and services will severely be affected if there is delays in fixing the road,” he said.
He confirmed several sections of the Highway between Kassam Pass and Goroka are breaking away which are posing real threats to Highway users.
“A section of the Barola mountain is on the verge of collapse, landslide is likely to break off Henganofi Bridge and Highway users should not travel these sections at nights and during rainy periods,” he added.
He said because of the fuel supplies could not flow into Goroka and other centres in the Highlands, police are rationalising their fuel consumptions.
He called on business houses and institutions to be cautious as it would take some time before the Highway would be reconnected.
A huge culvert at Narazate creek at Korokoreate creek collapsed between 8pm and 9pm on Sunday and cut off the Highway.
The Daulo Pass, Watabung and Magiro sections of the highway are prone to landslides and were also at risk especially during the rainy season.