Get flyover collapse probed by tech panel
This is regarding the collapse of the under construction Bomikhal flyover in Bhubaneswar. Now there is an urgent need to test and check all flyovers in Odisha by engaging the services of an expert technical team which should have members from IIT to investigate. The Government must also fix responsibility as we have a right to live in a safe and secure environment. Thanks to the police and the fire brigade who reached the spot immediately after the accident took place, the situation could be taken into control. I am shocked and stunned that the tragedy is bound to raise questions about the quality of civil engineering projects in cities. Many super structures run through or are being planned in crowded areas. Why is this so? If there is no way out, are there not any safety plans? The accident should serve as a wake-up call for urban planners, structural engineers and project management consultants as we now seem to be embarking on a massive urban infrastructure building spree. The collapse of the flyover is also a reminder of the shoddy quality of material and construction practices in general, and the scant attention paid to public safety. The politicians have quickly jumped into the fray and are now busy passing the buck. A flyover or a bridge under construction can collapse only for four reasons: faulty design, poor workmanship, poor quality of materials or a combination of all these factors. Between the cacophony of charges and counter charges among politicians, only a high-level inquiry by technical professionals of unimpeachable integrity can ferret out the truth.
A good example of how such accidents are analysed is the inquiry report of the US National Transportation and Safety Board into the sudden collapse of the 40-year-old Interstate Highway-35 bridge in Minneapolis, US on August 1, 2007. Can we expect a professional inquiry of that standard? Meanwhile, the media should exercise some restraint instead of jumping to conclusions, as usual.
-K Ravi, E-237,GGP Colony, Bhubaneswar-751025,MOB-9437616497
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