Mudslides block Kokopo-Rabaul road

Islands, Normal


HEAVY rain in East New Britain last Friday caused mudslides to block the Kokopo-Rabaul road.
Commuters were thrown into confusion as they tried to make their way home after work or run errands in both the Rabaul and Kokopo towns, and PMVs and private vehicles were forced to make detours of nearly 25km.
The rain started after lunch in Kokopo and by 4pm, the provinces main road was closed at Rapolo in Rabaul by mud.
Road users were forced to use the alternative but longer Burma Road for a while until it was blocked by a power pole that fell at the steepest section.
The mud dried on Saturday and traffic resumed.
However, the road was not cleared and villagers said the road would be blocked by rain again.
Business houses have been complaining about the lack of maintenance by the authorities and the lack of equipment on stand-by to clear roads blocked by mudslides.
The ENB Chamber of Commerce reiterated its call on the Department of Works and others to respond urgently to the need for proper road maintenance.