(BIVN) – Lava from the eruption of Mauna Loa was still about 3.2 miles from the Daniel K. Inouye Highway as of Thursday evening, however State and County officials are making preparations should the flow cross the Saddle Road.
On Thursday, the Hawaiʻi Department of Transportation announced it has reopened the second lane over Nanue Bridge on the Hāmākua Coast. The bridge is located at mile marker 18.5 on Hawaii Belt Road, which will become a critical route for all traffic going from East Hawaiʻi to West Hawaiʻi should the Saddle by blocked by lava.
The makai, or northbound, lane of Nanue Bridge was closed due to placement of a tower scaffold used in the emergency repairs. The Hawaiʻi DOT says the scaffolding “was removed and the makai lane of the bridge was washed down and prepared for traffic.” The State says lane reopened at 2:30 p.m. on Thursday, December 1st.
“With the opening of the lane over Nanue Bridge, there will be no permanent lane closures in case Hawaii Belt Road (Highway 19) needs to be used as the primary freight route between east and west Hawaii,” the DOT said.