Monday, May 10, 2010

Quepem Front petitions on precarious bridge in town

The Quepem Taluka Mining Affected Peoples front submitted a memorandum to the Sub-Divisional magistrate demanding immediate inspection of the Quepem bridge for its loading capacity.

The front in a memorandum submitted to the SDM copy of which forwarded to the South Goa Collector states that the Quepem bridge, a “B” class loading bridge, which is over the river Kushawati, was constructed at an estimated cost of Rs.10 lakhs by Gammon India Pvt. Ltd and was inaugurated on 18/11/1962.

The memorandum further states that the bridge was designed for a safe working load or capacity of 34 tons. Since then, the bridge has sustained the stress and strain it is subjected to, for over 48 years and has not been tested for its present loading capacity and structural safety since its commissioning in 1962. However the free movement of heavy vehicles is allowed over the bridge without and regulations being enforced on the speed and load capacity on the bridge.

That due to passage of time and natural decay and deterioration of structural materials, the bridge has become weak, as cracks have developed on the structure and vibrations are sensed by pedestrians walking over the bridge, thereby suggesting that grave danger and tragedy awaits the bridge and its users.

The vibration symptoms of the bridge again suggests that the same is still sustaining in dangerous condition and is in a danger of imminent collapse and hence is not fit for movement of heavy traffic until structural damage control exercises are conducted by the departments concerned. states the memorandum further

The front , in the interest of civilians of Quepem and in the safety of general public demanded testing of the bridge for its loading capacity within 10 days, failing which the Front have warned that their members along with the citizens in large numbers shall be constrained to forcefully block the bridge for heavy transport to highlight the issue and safeguard our local infrastructure.

Along with the memorandum the Front has annexed news paper cuttings.

John Fernandes

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