The consulting agency conducting the health audit of Kalighat bridge raised concerns over its internal structural condition. The Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority (KMDA) has planned to install height bars on both sides to restrict heavy vehicles from using the bridge.
They are also planning to undertake further structural tests of the bridge to find out the exact extent of damage of the 45-year-old bridge spread over about 1.5km. “More tests are required for Kalighat bridge to assess the damage. Cops will be requested to make certain traffic diversions as the bridge needs to be shut down for a few days,” a KMDA official said. “The bridge is suspected to have diminishing load-bearing capacity. Heavy vehicles should be barred from using the bridge as it will further put pressure on the piers,” an official said.
Kalighat bridge was closed for a day on July 13 for a load capacity test. The Kolkata traffic police diverted vehicles through the adjoining roads. The consulting agency is preparing a detailed project report about how the bridge can be repaired after the damage is identified.
The final inspection report is expected to come by the end of August. Previous inspection by KMDA engineers revealed that the bridge has been corroded in many places on its pillars due to acidic water of the canal flowing below.
Source: Times of India