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Rediff.com  » News » Day after Mumbai bridge collapse, cracks appear on another

Day after Mumbai bridge collapse, cracks appear on another

Last updated on: July 04, 2018 18:51 IST

The bridge was closed and traffic diverted, police said.

IMAGE: A woman walks along the crack developed over the bridge at the Grant Road station, in Mumbai on Wednesday. All Photograph: Shashank Parade/PTI Photo

Cracks were detected on a bridge at the Grant Road Railway Station in south Mumbai, hours after an overbridge collapsed at a station in suburban Andheri, the city civic body said on Wednesday.

The bridge was closed and traffic diverted, police said.

The cracks were found on the Frere bridge at the Grant Road station around 11.30 pm on Tuesday following which traffic was diverted, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) said.

 

The Mumbai Police also posted an update on its Twitter handle on Wednesday, saying the bridge has cracks and hence, traffic has been diverted to Nana Chowk towards Kennedy bridge.

The bridge has been closed and will be opened in a couple of days based on the civic body's instructions, police said.

IMAGE: Cracks were found on a bridge at the Grant Road station in south Mumbai, hours after an overbridge collapsed at a railway station in suburban Andheri.

"We have closed the Grant Road bridge for vehicular movement on the BMC's recommendations. Till that time, we have diverted traffic towards Kennedy bridge. Traffic movement has been smooth," Joint Commissioner of Police (Traffic) Amitesh Kumar said.

BMC officials and engineers will inspect the bridge and an audit will be carried out. Based on their instructions, the bridge will be opened for traffic movement in a day or two, he said.

Engineers of the BMC's bridges department and other agencies have been asked to monitor and assess the condition of the Frere bridge, an official of the BMC's disaster management unit said.

An overbridge at a railway station in the Andheri area collapsed on Tuesday during heavy rains, disrupting train services, injuring five people and putting the spotlight once again on the creaky infrastructure of the metropolis.

IMAGE: Traffic diverted over the bridge as Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation workers carry out repair work.

Railway Minister Piyush Goyal had visited the spot and ordered an inquiry by the Commissioner of Rail Safety.

He had also said that during the next six months, a joint safety audit will be conducted by the railways, the BMC and the Indian Institute of Technology, Mumbai, at the 445 road overbridges, foot overbridges and bridges over pipelines in Mumbai as part of efforts to improve safety of commuters.

The BMC on Wednesday said the structural audit of 274 bridges was underway and a final action plan for repairs, maintenance and re-construction will be prepared within a week.

"Our department is carrying out the structural audit of 274 bridges since last year and the work is in final stages. We hope to soon prepare a final list of bridges under various categories - in good condition, requiring minor repairs, major repairs or requiring reconstruction," BMC's Chief Engineer (Bridges) Shitlaprasad Kori told PTI.

Good bridges would be those that do not require any immediate repairs, he said.

The minor repairs of bridges would include fixing tiles and leakages, while the ones having structural flaws will require major repairs or maintenance, Kori said.

IMAGE: BMC officials and engineers will inspect the bridge and an audit will be carried out. Based on their instructions, the bridge will be opened for traffic movement in a day or two.

Under the fourth category, bridges that are in a dilapidated condition will be demolished and new ones will be constructed, he said.

Of the 274 bridges, 137 are located in the western suburbs, 60 in the eastern suburbs and 77 in the main city.

Kori said the Gokhale overbridge that collapsed on Tuesday was constructed and owned by the BMC, but it was the Western Railway's responsibility to maintain it.

"Not only for this bridge, we have paid bills of the Western Railway (WR) and the Central Railway (CR) for the maintenance of bridges falling in their territory," he said.

"In the last four years, we have paid Rs 92.51 crore to CR and Rs 11.25 crore to WR after they submitted the estimated costs for the reconstruction and maintenance of various infrastructure owned by us and located on their premises," the BMC official said.

Kori denied WR's claims that the optic fibre cable, sanctioned by the BMC, may have led to the corrosion and collapse of the Gokhale overbridge.

The WR had yesterday said it was not aware about pipelines and optic fibre cable laid on the collapsed overbridge.

"This is not the time to indulge in 'blame game'. Everyone knows what an optic fibre cable weight is... Almost negligible. May be, the permission was granted at the local ward level, but railway's nod is a pre-requisite condition for laying out the optic fibre cable," Kori added.

FOB connecting Elphinstone-Parel stations becomes operational

Suburban train commuters at the Elphinstone Road-Parel stations in Mumbai got a big relief as the Western Railway today threw open a 73-metre-long foot-over bridge (FOB).

Work on the 6-metre-wide FOB was initiated on September 29 last year, the day on which a stampede at Elphinstone Road FOB staircase killed 23 people.

The FOB connects Parel station and new platforms of Parel Terminus.

The FOB construction work got over on Tuesday and it was opened for passengers on Wednesday without any 'ceremony', Western Railway Chief PRO Ravinder Bhakar told PTI.

"The FOB has been built at a cost of Rs 9.85 crore and is in addition to the FOB constructed by the Army recently at the northern end," Bhakar said.

It will enable commuters to travel between Elphinstone Road and Parel stations from both ends, he said.

"Western Railway floated the work tender on November 6, 2017 and the Letter of Acceptance was issued the next day. The construction work commenced on November 8," he said.

Two girders on the Western Railway portion of the bridge were launched in March and April 2018, he said.

The FOB work was completed in record time despite constraints like removal of encroachments, shifting of utilities, cutting and trimming trees and rains obstructing the work, he said.

The FOB is "passenger-friendly" and less prone to corrosion, Bhakar said.

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