Sudden showers on 2 days hamper repair work of roads, potholes in Thane
A week after Hindustan Times highlighted the poor condition of some of the major roads in the city, the potholes still remain to be filled. The road repair and pothole filling work that was initiated by various authorities fell flat after heavy downpour in the city on Wednesday night washed away the materials used to fill the craters. Commuters continue to struggle during peak hours due to traffic snarls faced while dodging the potholes.
The Public Works Department claims that the Mumbra Bypass Road has been repaired. “We have filled all the potholes on the Bypass Road and this has resulted in smoother traffic on this stretch of road,” said S Totawar, executive engineer, PWD, Thane. On July 29, a five-foot deep crater had formed on the Thane-bound lane of the crucial road with the road under the bridge being visible through it.
However, commuters claim that PWD has done shoddy repair work; “They have only filled the potholes with mud and gravel and no efforts have been taken to level the road or asphalt the stretch,” said Ashrita Gupta, a 46-year-old Kalwa resident.
Moreover, the National Highway Authority of India, which looks after the Mumbai–Nashik Highway, has started the pothole-filling work from Majiwada to Vartak Nagar. “We have initiated the filling of potholes on this part of the road and will gradually move towards Vadpe. The huge craters at major intersections of the highway have also been filled. Rest of the work is in progress in the small gaps of dry spell that we get to complete the repair work,” said an officer from NHAI.
“Filling the potholes itself has been a respite for the commuters. The huge craters have been levelled and traffic jams are fewer on this stretch. However, such efficiency should be displayed all through by the authorities and ensure that potholes don’t recur,” said Yogesh Jhanjhawal, a 34-year-old Kalyan resident.
The Thane Municipal Corporation (TMC) had started with the road repair work but the unexpected heavy showers have hampered the process.
“From Tuesday onwards, we had initiated pothole-filling and road-asphalting works. However, the unexpected heavy showers in the evening for two consecutive days have forced us to temporarily stop the asphalting of roads and only continue with filling of potholes. As of now, it would be difficult to predict the time taken to complete the road repair work as the rains continue to disrupt the process,” said Arjun Ahire, deputy city engineer, TMC.
Although the traffic along Ghodbunder Road has seen some respite, the condition of potholes continues to be the same. Efforts were taken to fill the potholes. However, heavy rains caused the potholes to reappear. Commuters face traffic snarls during peak hours while the MMRDA claims that it’s awaiting a dry spell to repair the roads.
SVR Srinivas, commissioner, MMRDA, said, “We have already initiated pothole-filling and road repair work. However, as there has not been a continuous dry spell, we are not able to complete the work and the repaired roads have not dried properly leading to only temporary relief for motorists.”
Meanwhile, the TMC has imposed a fine of ₹10 lakh against a city-based contractor for substandard road work. “It is the responsibility of the concerned contractor to ensure that the roads are motorable. Making temporary repairs is part of the work order, but a large number of potholes were observed on the roads and this inconvenienced many commuters. A time period of three days was given to the contractor to submit the reasons for the lackadaisical work. As no response was received, the contractor was fined,” said an official from TMC.
Two weeks ago, four civic engineers were suspended by the TMC commissioner for the poor state of roads in the city.