Sohna Road residents fear for safety after flyover collapse
The collapse of a section of the elevated Sohna Road on late Saturday night has left the residents of the neighbouring Sispal Vihar and Vipul Greens, residential societies located opposite the site of the mishap, shaken.
Sohna Road divides both these residential societies that are located opposite each other.
Few residents of Sispal Vihar in Sector 49 say that they will avoid travelling via Sohna Road for the time being and instead take a slightly longer route via Bakhtawar Chowk. They said that the incident has brought in question the structural stability of the elevated road, with many fearing that it might collapse again.
“Even though I realise that this may be a one-off incident, there is still a sense of paranoia in me. I fear the flyover may collapse again. As such, for the time being, I am opting to not drive via Sohna Road and use the arterial routes via Bakhtawar Chowk. It will take me a couple of weeks to travel via Sohna Road again,” said Sanjeev Kumar, a resident of Sispal Vihar.
Residents said that they are reminded of similar incidents that have taken place in other parts of India in recent times. For instance, in Kolkata in March 2016, an under-construction flyover had come crashing down, causing more than 50 fatalities. Similarly, an under-construction Delhi Metro bridge near East of Kailash collapsed in July 2009, claiming the lives of five people.
Hariharan Seetharaman, a resident of Vipul Greens in Sector 48, said that when the flyover collapsed last night, he felt like his building had been hit by a concrete boulder. “The jolt was worse than any earthquakes I have ever experienced. The entire neighbourhood had come out onto the main road. It immediately reminded me of the incident that took place 11 years ago in East of Kailash and the one which occurred in Kolkata a few years back. We live less than 100 metres away from where the incident occurred. We could have easily met with a similar fate,” he said.
Seetharaman said that when he saw over 50-60 government officials standing below one of the slabs of the under-construction flyover on Sunday. It left him worried.
“I wanted to go out there and tell them to stand elsewhere as there is no certainty that the slab above may not come crashing down. The whole time they were there, I felt uneasy and uncomfortable,” said Seethraman.
Monika Sachdev, a resident of Sispal Vihar, said that the incident reminded her similar mishaps that have occurred in the National Capital Region (NCR) in the past.
“I am just grateful that this happened during this period when there were fewer people were out on the roads because of the weekend curfew. Sohna Road is a popular stretch that tends to see a lot of pedestrian activity and traffic movement. Had things been normal, the damage could have been far worse,” she said.