ANDHRA PRADESH

Beam-launcher slips at Sitannapeta bridge

A minor accident occurred during the placing of a huge iron structure on Seetannapeta bridge on Eluru Canal in Vijayawada on Tuesday.

A minor accident occurred during the placing of a huge iron structure on Seetannapeta bridge on Eluru Canal in Vijayawada on Tuesday.   | Photo Credit: — PHOTO: RAJU V.

Staff Reporter

VIJAYAWADA: The slip of a beam-launcher at Sitannapeta bridge, which is under construction, created a flutter here on Tuesday.

The incident occurred when the workers were placing the beam-launcher to launch the beams onto the piers. The launcher did not sit in the exact position and moved towards one side and slipped. It remained hanging in the air for some time, drawing the attention of passers by.

Soon, rumours spread fast that the bridge had collapsed and so on. The rumours brought back memories of the recent accident in Delhi, where an elevated track bed under construction as part of Metro Rail project caved in. Crowds rushed pell-mell to the work site.

The officials said it was “very common and routine” for the beam launchers to slip during construction of bridges. The officials were planning to place the rollers to push the pre-cast beam onto the piers. After pulling the beams into the launcher on steel tracks, the launcher would be moved into the position where the beam would be dropped.

As many as 12 girders – pre-cast girders are being used in the bridge – are required for the Sitannapeta bridge, and a major portion of this work is said to have been completed. Once the girders are placed on piers, a major portion of the bridge would be completed. The construction of slab would be a relatively easier task, officials explained. It would take another three days to complete the process.

The VMC took up construction of the bridge across Eluru canal near Sitannapeta under Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) programme at an estimated cost of Rs. 7.15 crores. It is one of the key intersections on the Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS) pilot corridor for plying special buses.

The works on the bridge were going on at a brisk pace, and were likely to be completed by August, officials said.

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