Crashing down: It’s raining 80-ton drills

Published: February 25, 2013

Experts have been called from Karachi and Lahore to assist city officials at the site. PHOTO: WASEEM IMRAN/EXPRESS

RAWALPINDI: An 80-ton hydraulic drill machine that collapsed at Marir Chowk on Friday has still not been removed, blocking the road completely and creating massive traffic jams.

The machine could not be dismantled and experts have been called from Karachi and Lahore to assist city officials at the site.

The machine was set up at the Marir Chowk Tunnel construction site and the collapse led to traffic snarls on Benazir Bhutto Road and link roads including Saddar, Secretariat Number 2, Bank Road, Mall Road, Katcheri Chowk, Tipu Road, Liaquat Road, Raja Bazaar, City Saddar Road, Committee Chowk, Iqbal Road, Waris Khan and many other areas, causing immense troubles for commuters and pedestrians alike.

“Hundreds of vehicles have been stuck here since the morning, but no traffic police officials have bothered to show up and try to manage it,” said Muhammad Anas, a resident of Kalyamabad.

The log-jam had brought all vehicular traffic to a grinding halt for hours. “It took me three hours to reach to my workplace,” said Rana Zafar, a mechanic.

Rawalpindi Development Authority (RDA) Engineering Department Deputy Director Umer Farooq told The Express Tribune that no labourers or passersby were injured in the incident, and that experts have been called in from Karachi and Lahore to help find a solution.

He was hopeful that the road would be reopened before the day’s end. He said that no labourer or passerby was injured in the incident.

For now, the RDA is having the machine dismantled piece-by-piece to try and reduce the weight of the machine.

“Engineers are supervising work on dismantling it carefully as it is a very expensive machine,” he said.

Published in The Express Tribune, February 25th, 2013.

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