NZ Geomechanics News

What’s On at Waka Kotahi

Comments and opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those of Waka Kotahi

Waka Kotahi welcomes additional SMEs

Programme and Standards-Transport Services-System Resilience Team, led by Richard Topham, has welcomed new subject matter experts in the geotechnical and drainage fields. This brings the geotechnical SMEs up to three persons (Dante Legaspi, Sigfrid Dupre and Sivaram Thirumoorthy) with Rajika Jayarantne joining as senior stormwater engineer. A resource increase already snapped up!

Slope Assessed Risk Level Course(s)

The Waka Kotahi/NZTA ARL slope assessment courses are in the early stages of planning for two courses centred in the North Island in October/November 2022. With border restrictions ending we may finally get the show on the road! Those who were accepted for the first course will retain first right of refusal for that course with the additional course to be provided to enable further participation.

Those seeking more information can contact

S6 Bridges, geotechnical structures and other significant structures inspection policy

The latest version of S6 policy was published in February 2020 and introduces geotechnical structures for the first time, to get a copy, google ‘NZTA S6’.

Work has started on the geotechnical structures policy (S7) and its associated inspection manual and course to replace the existing geotechnical aspects in S6 (Bridges, geotechnical structures and other significant structures inspection policy). 

We are looking for any interesting images of failed geotechnical structures for inclusion in the inspection manual, so if you have any we’d be keen to hear from you:

Geotechnical Manual: Good idea?

We had an overwhelming response to a multi-audience survey supporting a ‘Geotechnical manual’ to sit alongside the Bridge manual. There were some interesting differences in opinion as to the content which we will follow up on. The geotechnical manual is planned to be developed over a number of years (added to) to become the source of geotechnical requirements and guidance. Initially the document would pull together all the current geotechnical aspects covered by many NZTA/WK documents including the State Highway Procurement Manuals, which would be an immediate benefit for practitioners!

If you have any views, again let us know:

Sharing Research

Thanks to those who provided/shared historical research done on WK projects. Suspect there’s still a lot out there, so if you know of any research that has been done for Transit/NZTA/Waka Kotahi; have a copy under your computer monitor or holding the back door open, or even somewhere on that flash drive, it would be great to receive a copy:

Unstable slopes and rocks!

As part of our initiative to utilise learnings from projects, we are currently developing two guidance documents: Rockfall Protection Systems Maintenance Manual (an area where there is little to no guidance for works completed prior to 2020) and Rockfall Protection Structures Design Guidance (to unify design approaches and methods which currently vary widely between designers with associated varying risk profiles for Waka Kotahi). Both of these documents relate to Waka Kotahi highway works though it is recognised they may be adopted by ‘others’. If you represent a local authority or other potential user, we’d be keen to hear from you to ensure we provided a ‘rounded’ document. Contact either myself or

Writing papers on experience gained/problems solved on Waka Kotahi projects

Please be aware that any paper written for submission to a conference, or any other forum has to be reviewed by Waka Kotahi prior to submission. We simply need to ensure a number of aspects of papers. We are not undertaking critical analysis of the content; simply ensuring the content reflects Waka Kotahi and/or is appropriately caveated. Generally, these reviews are undertaken by the Waka Kotahi technical specialists through the applicable project manager. For geotechnically related papers feel free to contact myself directly if unsure. Be assured Waka Kotahi is keen to promote learning across our projects. 

Tags : #Waka Kotahi

NZ Geomechanics News
Stuart Finlan
NZ Geomechanics news>Issue 103 - June 2022
New Zealand

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