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Contractor negligence results in Thanh Tri Bridge collapse
  • | | April 21, 2010 08:48 AM

One of the vertical beams started leaning then collapsed, causing a domino effect.

The Ministry of Construction has revealed the details of their initial investigation into the collapse of a support beam, suggesting it was the direct result of careless construction from the contractor.

Nguyen Van Cong, Head of the Ministry of Transport's (MoT) Office, said that Le Thanh Ha, Deputy Director of the Transport Construction Quality Control and Management Bureau was sent to the scene for inspection right after the Ministry was told of the accident.

Acording to the project investor - the Thang Long project management unit, the bridge’s surface system includes concrete vertical beams, which were put on columns connected with each other through horizontal concrete beams. The vertical beams were installed on columns on December 4, 2009

While horizontal beams were about to be cast, vertical beams were supported by wooden pillars. As the horizontal beams were waiting to be installed, one of the vertical beams started leaning then collapsed, causing a domino effect.

The Minister of Transport Ho Nghia Dung directed relevant units to identify the responsibility of each individual and units involved in the accident in order to report to the Ministry no later than April 24, 2010.

Meanwhile, Dung also requested to review designing documents of the whole project to ensure that appropriate construction methods are used, traffic and labour safety at the site and solutions to resolving the problems at the site as well as of the entire Thanh Tri Bridge project with an aim of preventing reoccurrences.

These details have also been reported to the Prime Minister.

By midday of April 18, many people in the Linh Dam area of Hanoi heard a very big noise. They rushed out of the house to figure out what was happening. They saw beams and a part of Phap Van viaduct connecting with Thanh Tri Bridge collapsing.

Ngo Xuan Tuyen, living in Room 1310, CT4A2, Bac Linh Dam, said that he was standing at the corridor when he heard a big noise of collapse. He went to the site and found that there were four beams on the ground. One of them was not broken but had many cracks. The other one was broken into 2 pieces. The remaining ones were broken into 3-4 pieces.

There was no human damage reported, because the accident occurred during break time.

On April 19, the Manager of the Division for criminal investigation of order, economic management & position (PC15) under the Hanoi police department in collaboration with police of Hoang Mai District were present at the scene to investigate the cause.

According to a leader of PC15, under guidelines from the Diretor of Hanoi’s Police Department, they will file the case in court if any criminal violation clues are found.

The contractor estimated the damage to be around VND600 million ($31,645).

Thanh Tri Bridge is the largest of seven bridge projects in Hanoi crossing over the Red River. The bridge connects the South area of Belt Road No.3 that is a very important route through Hanoi.

Its length is 12.8km with an investment using Official Development Assistance worth VND5.7 trillion ($300 million).

Below are some pictures of the scene:

The four collapsed beams

Workers rushed to back to the scene

After the accident, the beams were covered with canvas

Overview of the scene

Police investigating the scene

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