Collapsed compound wall puts pedestrians at risk

Many commuters have taken to crossing the railway line after the collapse of the wall near the Fort Railway Station. — Photo: R. Ragu  

Nearly a year after a portion of the compound wall separating the railway lines of the Mass Rapid Transit System and Old Fort Glacis near Fort railway station collapsed, the breach is yet to be plugged.

Vendors near the railway station said the compound wall abutting the MRTS railway line collapsed during the heavy rains of December last year. The wall separates the railway line and Defence property, including residential quarters, schools and other Army establishments. More importantly, it separates the railway line and the road leading to the rear entrance to Fort St. George.

Auto drivers near the Fort railway station said the breach in the compound wall was risky, as the distance between the railway line and the road parallel to it was less than 6 feet. A 25-feet-long portion of the wall had collapsed, they said. Pedestrians are now crossing the railway line at this spot to reach Muthuswami Bridge and hence, the wall had to be rebuilt without delay, they added. Southern Railway sources however said the wall had been rebuilt after the collapse in December but it might have collapsed more recently again during the showers in July or this month.

The debris had fallen dangerously close to the railway line towards Velachery. The debris would be removed soon and a new wall built in its place, officials said.

They had engaged a private engineering firm for the specific task of attending to breaches on compound walls between Chennai Beach and Chetpet railway stations. The stretch around Fort railway station was accident-prone, a problem compounded by pedestrians who manage to squeeze through the steel fence along Muthuswami Bridge and walk across 5 railway lines to reach the opposite side instead of using the pedestrian foot overbridge. Officials said they would take up work on plugging the breach near Fort station on a priority basis.

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Printable version | Sep 17, 2021 2:18:09 AM |

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