Landslide hit Georgia-Russia road reopens in two weeks

Fresh mudslides blocked the main road leading to the Kazbegi-Larsi Custom Service point with Russia., 22 Aug 2014 - 12:20, Tbilisi,Georgia

One major road through the Caucasus connecting Georgia to Russia blocked by this week’s landslide should be reopened in two weeks, says a Georgian official.

Traffic has been prohibited along the Georgian Military Road that weaves alongside the Tergi River since Wednesday evening’s landslide but work had begun to reopen the road as soon as possible.

Fresh mudslides through Dariali Gorge blocked the main road leading to the Kazbegi-Larsi Custom Service point with Russia late on August 20.

The disaster claimed the life of one man and one more is missing.

Secretary of the State’s Security and Crisis Management Council Mindia Janelidze believed at least two weeks was needed for the affected roads to be fixed.

"This is only the preliminary assessment as the scale of the damage and the work needed to fix the roads has not yet been determined,” Janelidze said.

As well damaging the roads, Wednesday’s disaster caused severe flooding in the area, particularly the Kazbegi-Larsi Customs checkpoint.

"The Custom Service’s infrastructure was seriously damaged. Water entered the Customs building. The working places of staff including police officers and customers are smashed,” Janelidze said.  Kazbegi-Larsi Customs checkpoint after the landslide. Photo by

The Ministry of Finance has organised a special commission to evaluate the loss caused by the disaster.

In addition, mudslide caused major damage to the North-South gas pipeline that transported natural gas from Russia to Armenia thorough Georgia. As a result, gas has been temporarily disabled from travelling along this route.

Heavy equipment of Road Department has been taken to the site and staff have already begun clearing the road.

Wednesday’s landslide occurred near the fatal landslide which struck Dariali Gorge on May 17, a few kilometers south from the Kazbegi-Zemo Larsi border-crossing point with Russia. The road was blocked for almost a month. That disaster claimed the lives of five people.

Heavy rain was believed to be the cause of the landslide.