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Monday, Aug 19, 2019

CSMT FOB collapse: BMC engineers didn’t study audit report carefully, says bridge dept head

Civic body to consider consulting IIT-B, VJTI for future audit report reviews and repair proposals

mumbai Updated: Apr 05, 2019 00:23 IST
Steffy Thevar
Steffy Thevar
Hindustan Times
The foot overbridge leading to CSMT collapsed in Mumbai on March 14.
The foot overbridge leading to CSMT collapsed in Mumbai on March 14.(HT Photo)

Engineers responsible for the upkeep of the Himalaya bridge near Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT) “did not carefully study” the audit report submitted by the Professor DD Desai engineering firm.

Sanjay Darade, chief engineer (bridges), admitted to the oversight by the engineers concerned, at Thursday’s standing committee meeting.

Although the audit report stated that the bridge was in “good” condition, it had also recommended a few repairs were not carried out.

“It can be concluded that the engineers concerned did not study the report carefully,” said Darade. “In the future, we will also consider consulting institutes like Indian Institute of Technology-Bombay (IIT-B) and Veermata Jijabai Technological Institute (VJTI) for the structural audit of bridges,” he added.

The CSMT FOB collapsed on March 14 killing six people and injured 31.

“By visual inspection of the collapsed bridge, it was evident that the structure collapsed due to welding failure which means that the joints between the treads and risers gave in. The overall structure of the bridge was not weak,” said a senior official from the bridges department, on condition of anonymity.

A proposal to carry out minor repairs on 16 bridges, foot overbridges (FOBs) and subways across the island city was put forward for discussion at the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) committee meeting. The 16 structures were audited by the accused firm Professor DD Desai who had also inspected the CSMT FOB.

At the meeting, the Opposition brought in an amendment to remove the name of the auditor (Professor DD Desai) from the ₹14-crore proposal to repair the 16 structures.

“Tomorrow if anything goes wrong with the repairs, then the blame will be on the standing committee,” said Ravi Raja leader of the Opposition in BMC. The proposal was passed after the amendment.

First Published: Apr 05, 2019 00:23 IST

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