BRIDGE ASSESSMENT REACHED EAST AND WEST GUADALCANAL

A bridge in West Guadalcanal totally cut off from the road on one side. Photo credit: SIBC.

A bridge in West Guadalcanal totally cut off from the road on one side. Photo credit: SIBC.

An assessment team from the Ministry of Infrastructure Development in partnership with the Transport Sector Development Project, funded by Asian Development Bank has assessed damages caused by the recent disaster in East and West Guadalcanal last week.

Speaking to local journalists yesterday, team leader John Hughes says there have been primary damages to roads and bridges in West Guadalcanal.

“The primary damage to the roads has been to West Guadalcanal and there was quite a number of places where the highway has been cut between here and Lambi, not so much from damage to the bridges themselves but to damage only road approach to the bridges and in many cases bridges because logs and debris coming down the rivers that close the main path of the water, causing it to go around and wash the roads away.”

He adds, in East Guadalcanal the MID’s contractor has already fixed some damages done to two major bridges there.

Mr Hughes says Balasuna bridge has now been fixed while the Mbarande bridge is yet to be fully repaired.

“And Mbarande had also been closed but has been reopened in the last couple of days there has been some structural damage to the Mbarande bridge but it has a load limit. It’s passable to light traffic at the moment and certainly vehicles more than five tonnes should not be travelling over Mbarande bridge at the moment. It’s got some structural damage, although it looks ok on top but it has some damage underneath the piles.”

Meanwhile, Civil Engineering Director of the Ministry of Infrastructure and Development Harry Rini says the ministry’s priority now is to fix roads and bridges in West Guadalcanal.

He says they will fix the infrastructure in West Guadalcanal as most of the structures there have been damaged.

Mr Harry says the approach they will take is to work from Honiara westward as all their machines are based in Honiara.

“In terms of the priorities, we are trying to work from Honiara out because most of the machinary that we might need to go down further west are based in Honiara. So the sort of approach that we take is traying to fix up Tanavasa then we move further down.”

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