A lengthy stretch of State Highway 50 Breakwater Rd was closed off to main traffic and pedestrians for two days to allow specialist rockface crews to carry out major checks along the face of Bluff Hill.

The work was sparked by the Napier City Council as part of a safety programme focused on investigating the stability of the rock face and carry out necessary removal of potential loose and dangerous spots.

This happened on Monday when one outcropping boulder was brought down successfully by the specialist crew using manual tools.

Containers were placed as a fence below to prevent any falling pieces striking the road or port fencing.


A second outcropping boulder was inspected but had not been removed as it was above a large ledge up the bluff face.

A council spokesperson said if pieces were to come free they would land on the wide ledge well up from the road.

On Tuesday the work crews carried out a "tidying up" programme which also included removing some vegetation spots.

Detours were put in place at both ends of Breakwater Rd between the two main Napier Port entrances also under traffic management control some port traffic was able to use the stretch.

As well as closed to general traffic the road and footpaths were also closed to cyclists and pedestrians while the work was carried out.

The bluff face inspections would continue to be carried out for safety reasons, probably every two years, the spokesperson said.

A similar rock face settling program was carried out last October not far from the Marine Parade end port entrance.

Specialist technicians from Abseil Access dislodged what were deemed potentially dangerous outcrops.


A protective walls of six old containers was set up to contain the falling debris.

The latest work was carried out between 8am and 5pm on Monday and Tuesday. The road is set to be re-opened to all traffic on Wednesday.