By Our Staff Reporter
Dehradun, 2 Nov: Official sources have stated that on the directions of Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami, the government has ordered a safety audit of all the bridges in the state. The decision to this effect has been taken in view of the recent collapse of a suspension bridge in Morbi in Gujarat leading to the deaths of more than 140 persons.
An order in this regard was issued today by the Principal Secretary, Public Works Department, RK Sudhanshu.
In the order, it has been clarified that there is no system in place for regular and proper maintenance of bridges in the state and that there is no provision of periodical safety audit within a prescribed time period or regarding restricting traffic movement more than the load capacity. In many places there is no signage near the bridges indicating load bearing capacity of the bridges.
Several important bridges of the country and the state have crashed or may be on the verge of crashing due to lack of a safety audit and, as a result, loss of life and property has been reported with traffic also getting disrupted.
Sudhanshu has directed the Chief Engineer, Public Works Department, that they must ensure immediate action in this regard. Updated information related to the condition of the bridges located in the state should be made available to the government within three weeks in each case.
He has also clarified that in relation to the bridges, the district level officers of the Public Works Department, in coordination with the district administrations, should ensure that bridges built long ago should be physically inspected and safety audit conducted on the basis of load capacity, following which proposals for maintenance should be made available to the state government urgently. He has also added that proper arrangement of signage should be made near the bridges. In the order, it has been warned that in case of any kind of accident, the executive engineer concerned would be held fully responsible.