People have anxious moments riding on the water-logged 150-metre stretch

Rains bring misery to people who frequent the Kulur bridge across the Gurupur river every year and people are forced to live with it. A few call it a “seasonal problem.” There are two parallel bridges across the river near NMPT. The one taking the city-bound vehicles is in bad shape.

S. Rao, who runs a medical store near the bridge, says: “Enough has been said about the problems we face because of the bridge and because of the slow-paced road-widening work of the National Highway. Nothing is happening. We are fed up”.

A scrap dealer adds: “When it rains, water gets logged on the bridge causing potholes.” He said the authorities would do some patch work instead of taking steps to prevent water logging. The problem would recur every monsoon.

Horrid time

Motorists, two-wheeler users in particular, have anxious moments riding on this 150-metre bridge. The problem becomes acute when it rains. “You cannot judge the depth of the potholes here. You have to be ready to be splashed by water if a bus overtakes you,” said Shankar Jeshpe, who regularly drives across the bridge on his motorcycle. The motorists have to drive through the slush accumulated on the bridge, he added.

The scrap vendor, who did not want to be named, said nothing was done to maintain the bridge. “Whenever we call officials about water-logging, they just drive through the portion without seeing the actual problem,” he said. The holes on the bridge meant for draining the water had remained clogged for a long time, he said.

P. George Modayil, team leader of National Highway Authority of India's New Mangalore Port Connectivity Project, said the responsibility of maintaining all the old bridges, including the Kulur bridge, is with IRCON that had been assigned the task of widening the Surathkal–B.C. Road stretch of the National Highway.

“The road on the bridge has been asphalted three years ago. It has started to wear out now,” he said.

On Tuesday, people associated with IRCON were seen working on the bridge by diverting vehicles approaching the bridge from Baikampady. The workers said they were trying to fill the potholes on the bridge.

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