TAMIL NADU

Narrow culverts pose risk to vehicle users

DRIVERS' NIGHTMARE: A narrow culvert on Tiruchi Road at Singanallur in the city. Photo: K. Ananthan

DRIVERS' NIGHTMARE: A narrow culvert on Tiruchi Road at Singanallur in the city. Photo: K. Ananthan  



K.V. Prasad

There is no self-discipline among most of the drivers

COIMBATORE: Two main roads in the city that form a part of highways are proving to be a cause for concern. Despite heavy traffic, narrow culverts persist on these roads to pose risk to vehicle users.

Built a couple of decades ago, the culverts have been rendered too narrow by the rapid rise in the number of vehicles using Avanashi Road and Tiruchi Road. While Tiruchi Road is a part of the National Highway 67, Avanashi Road is no more part of the National Highway 47 connecting Salem with Kochi. It is now under the State Highways after the laying of the Madukkarai-Nilambur Bypass Road. Even as the city planners try to work out ways to improve the traffic system, the culverts seem to put a spoke in their wheel on both these stretches.

The culvert on Avanashi Road near Nava India is a dangerous point for the unwary driver. Those used to travelling on this route will know the consequences of overtaking on the left at this point. Those who do not know may end up crashing into the canal below the road. The parapet of the culvert is the only protection, and a poor one at that. The nearly 100 ft road suddenly narrows at that point without any visible warning to the motorists. With no self-discipline among most of the drivers and speeding buses also pushing the smaller vehicles to the roadside, the culverts are turning out to be risky.

The culvert near the Coimbatore Stock Exchange had been widened as accidents occurred frequently. But, the culvert near the Uzhavar Sandhai at Singanallur on Tiruchi Road is yet to be widened. It is not only a traffic bottleneck but also a serious threat to vehicle users, says the secretary of the Citizens' Voice Club, C.M. Jeyaraam. Deep pits along the culverts threaten to kill people on Mettupalayam Road and Perur Road also, he says.

Mr. Jeyaraam points out that black topping has been done only on 70 per cent of the width of Avanashi Road, Tiruchi Road and Mettupalayam Road. There is risk from electric and telephone poles that reduce the space for vehicles to move on.

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