Overbridge on Himachal Highway collapses, two killed
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Last Updated: Thursday, July 29, 2010, 23:20
Shimla: Two persons were killed and two others seriously injured when an overbridge constructed on the key Dhami-Basantpur-Kingal Highway last year to provide all- weather connectivity to Rampur and Kinnaur gave in.

Four cement-laden trucks were parked on the bridge built by Border Roads Organisation (BRO) when the mishap took place last night, police said today. Two persons died on the spot while two others sustained grievous injuries, they said.

The BRO said it will probe into the incident.

The road is a vital link for transportation of army supplies upto Kaurik on Indo-Tibet border and also for carrying apple and other agriculture produce from Kinnaur and Rampur areas to various markets.

The traffic from the road has now been diverted to the alternate route via Narkanda on Hindustan Tibet National Highway, officials said.

One of the deceased has been identified as Prem, while the body of the other victim could not be retrieved as yet from under the debris of the collapsed bridge and mangled trucks.

Superintendent of Police, Shimla district, R M Sharma said a case has been registered against the truck drivers under various sections of IPC related to causing death by negligence. It was suspected that the trucks parked on the bridge carried more weight than allowed on it.

"If further investigation reveals any carelessness on part of the contractor who constructed the bridge, necessary action would be taken," Sharma added.

Meanwhile, Colonel (Works) at BRO's 'Deepak Project' Headquarters at Shimla, S S Pathania, said "The bridge was constructed in August 2009 and the BRO headquarters in Delhi is likely to soon order an inquiry into the incident and send a technical team to check composition of the material used in construction and the design."

"We would put up a Bailey bridge (portable pre-fabricated bridge) within next two days to restore traffic on the route," he added.

He said that the bridge was classified as 'Road Class 7' that can bear upto 70 tonnes of weight and it was quite possible that the trucks parked on it carried more weight.

Two years ago a bridge constructed by the state Public Works Department had collapsed near Bhuntar in Kullu, while heavy machinery was being transported over it to a hydropower project site.


First Published: Thursday, July 29, 2010, 23:20

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