After a video showing the Hub River Bridge's seemingly crooked pillars went viral on social media, officials from various departments visited the bridge for inspection on Friday and Saturday. Following this, a Sindh government spokesperson declared the bridge stable, even as the National Highway Authority (NHA) raised questions about its condition.
In a letter issued on Saturday after the inspection, a copy of which is available with The Express Tribune, NHA officials stated that due to a high volume of traffic, including heavy vehicles, on the bridge around the clock, its condition was not good.
According to the NHA, the important bridge falls under the limits of the N-25, acting as a link between Karachi and Gwadar ports. Around 500 metres in length, it was constructed approximately 50 years ago.
A tragedy waiting to happen.— Sikander Bizenjo (@sikanderbizenjo) September 4, 2020
Please take timely action and avert it. This is criminal negligence if you don't. This is the main bridge in hub connecting Sindh and Balochistan which sees thousands of cars every day.@jam_kamal @LiaquatShahwani @Senator_Baloch @ZarrarKhuhro pic.twitter.com/sKtzjPAADS
The NHA officials also recommended and asked for technical experts to provide a detailed design and working methodology to repair the bridge.
"This bridge is not in the limits of Sindh," said a senior official of Karachi's West district while talking to The Express Tribune, adding that it was the NHA's prime responsibility to maintain the vulnerable bridge. "Our teams are supporting the NHA teams," he added.
Meanwhile, police from both the provinces, Sindh and Balochistan, were deployed at the bridge to restrict commuters from travelling in a single row.
Later, Sindh government spokesperson Barrister Murtaza Wahab stated in a tweet that the condition of the stated bridge was stable.
"This is NHA's bridge. The South NHA general manager visited the bridge after the video was made viral and has confirmed that the structure of the bridge is stable. Unfortunately, the video was made from an angle which does not reflect the true picture," he said, adding that experts from NED University, Karachi, were in touch with the NHA about the bridge.
This is NHA’s bridge. GM South NHA visited the bridge after the video was made viral & has confirmed that the structure of the bridge is stable. Unfortunately the video was made from an angle which does not reflect the true picture. NED University people are is in touch with NHA https://t.co/IHww0QfC3b pic.twitter.com/UHg4GStjyM— Murtaza Wahab Siddiqui (@murtazawahab1) September 5, 2020
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