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22 of 49 wires were already corroded, welded suspenders too reason behind Morbi Bridge collapse, SIT reveals

The British era suspension bridge over Machhu river broke in Morbi on 30th October leading to deaths of 134 people.

On Monday, the Special Investigation Team (SIT) as part of their ongoing inquiry into the Morbi bridge disaster, found that 22 of the bridge’s 49 cables were rusted and that they were damaged already before the bridge collapse, which claimed lives of 134 people.

“22 of the 49 cables were corroded which indicates that those wires may have already been broken before the incident. The remaining 27 wires recently broke,” the preliminary report submitted by SIT revealed.

The report further examined the condition of the bridge’s suspenders and noted that sufficient inspection of the main cable and vertical suspenders had not been done before the start of repair work. It was further found that during the repairs, the new suspenders were soldered to the old ones.

The British-era bridge over the Macchu River in Gujarat’s Morbi was to be renovated, repaired, and operated by Ajanta Manufacturing Ltd (Oreva Group). The five-member SIT’s preliminary report, which it compiled after conducting an inquiry into the breakdown of the Morbi bridge, said that Oreva Group hired a “non-competent authority” to do the repair work.

“The new deck comprised of honeycomb aluminum sheets which were supported by four aluminum channels, vis-a-vis, the old deck that was made of wooden plank and supported by three channels. This led to an increase in the weight of the bridge,” the report said.

On January 31, Oreva Group Managing Director Jaysukh Patel turned himself into a court in Morbi about the tragic bridge collapse that occurred on October 30. The 1,262-page chargesheet submitted by the police on January 27 designated Patel as an accused.

The British-era suspension bridge collapsed only 5 days after it was reopened following renovations. The bridge was a tourist attraction, and at the time of the incident, reportedly over 500 people were on the bridge, far exceeding the capacity of 125.

The chargesheet mentioned that the Oreva officials allowed the bridge to be overcrowded as they had sold too many tickets. It was also found that the bridge was reopened by the company in a hurry without a required fitness certificate, and the authorities were not informed about the reopening. The chargesheet in the case has been lodged against the ten suspects under IPC sections 304, 308, 114, 336, 337, and 338.

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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