TAMIL NADU

S. Rly. replaces three bridges in 9 hours

An old bridge at Tiruvalangadu on the Chennai-Arakkonam section, about 60 km from Chennai, being replaced on Sunday. — Photo: S. Thanthoni

An old bridge at Tiruvalangadu on the Chennai-Arakkonam section, about 60 km from Chennai, being replaced on Sunday. — Photo: S. Thanthoni  

CHENNAI SEPT. 21. Three old railway bridges on the Chennai-Arakkonam section, have been replaced in a record time of nine hours by the Southern Railway.

Normally, it takes at least three months to demolish an old railway bridge and construct a new one. For this, train services on the section have to be closed. As a busy section such as the Chennai-Arakkonam one could not be closed for long, the Southern Railway decided to replace these bridges within a day and succeeded in it, thanks to modern construction techniques.

Constructed in 1860, the bridges were subsequently strengthened by cement grouting to arrest cracks developed in abutments. But the grouting did not withstand long, forcing the administration to go in for replacement.

About 1,100 workers along with railway engineers and machines, including six cranes and six pocklines executed the job today at a cost of Rs. 35 lakhs. The old stone arch/slab bridges have been replaced with reinforced cement concrete boxes, designed for modified broad gauge loading.

As many as 15 main line and 23 EMU services were either cancelled or regulated for the construction work.

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