Diversions, Bailey bridges to resume vehicular flow

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Aug 16, 2017-The Department of Roads is preparing to construct diversions and to install Bailey bridges in places of the East-West highway that were severely hit by massive floods triggered by downpours in the past few days.

The government agency said it has deployed engineers and officials to several locations to take stock of the damage. Sections of numerous major roads have been damaged across the country, crippling vehicular movement. Severed road links have hampered rescue operations in several districts, government officials said.

According to Ramesh Kumar Singh, chief divisional engineer at the department, bridges over the Ratu Khola in Mahottari and Dhudaura bridge on the Pathlaiya-Nijgadh section of the East-West highway in particular have sustained damage.

While a diversion has been constructed at Dhudaura, the Road Department is studying the possibility of setting up a Bailey bridge. The bridge had also borne the brunt of a flood three years ago.

The No 3 bridge along the Hetauda-Birgunj section was also hit by flood. A Bailey bridge installed years ago only supports one-way traffic.

In several hilly regions, the process of clearing up obstruction for resuming traffic is ongoing.

“Highways are being managed in some way or the other. The main concern is about roads connecting the district headquarters and the access roads,” Singh said.

Though the department does not have a comprehensive damage assessment, it estimates that some 50 bridges have been destroyed or partially damaged by floods.

The DoR has said the impact of floods is severe in the eastern and central regions while the damage in the western and far-western areas is moderate.

Two major highways in the East—Mechi and Koshi—have been seriously affected by floods and landslides. Tribhuvan, Prithvi and Postal highways also sustained

damage. Local authorities in the East said three bridges in Saptari have been washed away.

In the western region, hundreds of vehicles have been stuck in Banke as the task of repairing bridges is being delayed. A bridge on the Babai river at Jamdighat collapsed. The 425 metre long bridge was constructed two years ago.

Published: 16-08-2017 08:25

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