Commuters’ nightmare: Road repair, landslide, accident bring traffic to halt for 6 hours in Thane
The traffic along the Mumbra bypass, Majiwada junction, Kharegoan toll plaza, Shilphata, Kapurbawdi flyover and the Mumbai-Nashik Highway was stuck since 6.30 in the morning.mumbai Updated: Sep 09, 2017 18:10 IST
Saturday morning turned out to be a nightmare for commuters from Thane, who faced nearly five to six hours of traffic along two of its major highways. Ongoing road repair works, landslide and a trailer flipping over were some of the factors which added to the woes of the commuters.
The traffic along the Mumbra bypass, Majiwada junction, Kharegoan toll plaza, Shilphata, Kapurbawdi flyover and the Mumbai-Nashik Highway was stuck since 6.30 in the morning.
The jam was around seven-kilometre-long on the Mumbai-Nashik Highway, forcing most commuters to abandon their transport and walk on the roads.
A traffic police officer, requesting anonymity, said, “One lane of the Mumbra bypass was closed for road repair since Friday evening from 8pm. Vehicles were plying only on one side of the bypass, leading to traffic along the route. The situation, however, worsened when a landslide took place early in the morning. We had to close both the sides for almost an hour and a half till the landslide cleared. It took around three to four hours for the jam to finally clear.”
The landslide took place near Rehamania Hospital.
Santosh Kadam, regional disaster management officer of Thane Municipal Corporation (TMC), said, “The landslide took place around 7.30 in the morning, and we had dispatched one JCB and on emergency fire tender to the spot. The area was cleared in about an hour. However, traffic had to be closed due to the soil and stones that had fallen on the road.”
Though the traffic started bottling up around 9am, it took longer for the road to clear since one lane of the Mumbra bypass was blocked.
More than 50,000 heavy vehicles including trucks, trailers and containers ply from the Mumbra bypass road towards Bhiwandi, Taloja, Panvel and JNPT. Vehicles going towards Delhi, Agra, Ahmedabad and Chennai also use this bypass. The road is under the Public Works Department of the state.
An officer from the PWD department, requesting anonymity, said, “The condition of this road was bad and we did not get enough time to repair it owing to the continuous rain. We finally planned the repair of one lane between 8pm to 3am on Friday night, so the traffic was diverted to the other lane. We repaired the road using cement concrete, and had to keep the lane closed for over eight hours for it to dry. We will plan the repair on second lane soon.”
The traffic along Mumbra bypass was blocked from Kharegaon toll plaza to Shil Phata Road.
Traffic on Mumbai-Nashik Highway comes to halt for over five hours
The Mumbai-Nashik Highway, which passes from the Kharegaon Toll Plaza also witnessed hours of traffic jam, when a container overturned near Khadi bridge near Kharegaon. “The container was huge, and it ran over a divider on the bridge. It flipped in such a way that both sides of the road were blocked. The traffic was hit till Kapurbawdi Bridge, Majiwada and Mumbai-Nashik Highway on both the sides. The container fell around 6.45 in the morning and the traffic started moving only around 11pm,” the traffic police said.
Manoj Konkar, 35, a resident of Kalwa said, “I had booked a cab to Kalyan for some important work. However, the traffic did not move ahead of Bhiwandi bypass. I waited for over 45 minutes and then left the cab mid-way and walked till Rajnouli naka in search of public transport. I finally got an auto and reached my destination.”
Like Konkar, most people chose to abandon their mode of transport and walk in search of alternative mode of transport.
Kailash Patil, a resident of Mumbra, said, “The PWD gave no prior notice that they would be undertaking repair work on one lane of the bypass. We would have stayed away from the road and used an alternate road. It took me nearly an hour to cross the road.”