Nod awaited to strengthen accident-prone ghat section

Updated - September 16, 2016 04:55 pm IST

Published - June 29, 2016 12:00 am IST - ERODE:

A proposal mooted in recent years by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) for widening the Bannari-Dhimbam stretch of the Mysore National Highway has not been cleared by the Union Environment Ministry.

The procedure for approval had turned quite complicated after declaration of the Sathyamangalam forest area, which the road segments, as a Tiger Reserve, NHAI sources said.

The highway being the shortest route to Mysore from the Western region for passage of goods and passengers, the vehicle density is quite high, causing periodic accidents. The problem with the stretch is its steepness and inadequate manoeuvring space at bends, say frequent travellers. Passengers get stranded for hours whenever any accident takes place along the ghat section.

Not less than 1,000 lorries ply on the road every day as per conservative calculations made at the Bannari check-post, according to an official source.


There has been a demand from the travelling public to either create a second route between Sathyamangalam and Dhimbam, or widening the existing stretch.

The Central Government must act promptly on this demand, votaries of socio-economic development of tribal communities living on Sathy hills emphasised.

But there is no scope at all, say Highways and Forest Department officials. “The only available option is widening of the existing space,” a senior NHAI official said.

While the Detailed Project Report for four-laning of the National Highway on Tamil Nadu side till Sathyamangalam was getting readied, any substantial improvement of the road in the Bannari-Dhimbam stretch was unlikely any time in the future unless the Union Environment Ministry treated the proposal as a special case and permitted widening, NHAI sources emphasised.

Periodic bitumen-topping and construction of railings on the sides are the only possible measures the NHAI has been able to carry out on the stretch.

The steep geomatric gradient at the bends and inadequate space for turning radius is, particularly, not ideal for passage of multi-axle vehicles.

Though the space cannot be expanded, accidents could be prevented by remedying the gradient with a huge quantity of concrete mix is essential.

The NHAI would be able to carry out the rectification of the gradients at the bends once the Environment Ministry gives the nod, the sources said.

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