FOR the first time since late March, the Oxley Highway between Tamworth in NSW's north east and Port Macquarie on the north coast, is open to traffic the whole way through, which will ease some headaches for countless locals.
The final 2 kilometre stretch between Yarras and Gingers Creek is now open, albeit five sections along that length will only be single lane traffic with alternating flow, and have a speed limit of 60km/h.
That portion of the highway had been shut off since damaging storms caused a major landslip more than three months ago.
The news will come as music to the ears of locals who often need to travel to the coast, and business owners in towns such as Walcha who have struggled with a lack of travellers since the road closed.
However, Minister for Regional Transport and Roads Paul Toole said roadworks were likely to continue for a long time.
He said while getting the road open was one thing, restoring it to its previous condition - and even including extra safeguards - would be a mammoth job.
"[Crews] used drones to produce three-dimensional imagery to help determine how to rebuild the slopes in the safest possible way," he said.
"Crews will now shift their focus to getting the highway back to its pre-flood condition.
"This won't be an easy job and those who use the Oxley will be seeing roadworks along this part of the highway for many months to come."
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Member for Tamworth, Kevin Anderson, said locals had shown great patience as crews cleared more than 10,000 tonnes of debris.
"Businesses in and around Walcha have really struggled with the loss of tourism dollar brought on by this road closure so it is extremely gratifying to see all this hard work to get the road open pay off," Mr Anderson said.
"I'd like to thank the community for their ongoing patience and support they've shown while work to restore the highway has been underway, much of it by crews who are locals themselves."
For the latest traffic updates download the Live Traffic NSW App, visit livetraffic.com or call 132 701.