Last Updated on Sunday, 4 September 2022, 15:30 by Denis Chabrol
The Demerara Harbour Bridge said its engineers and technical staff are currently working on getting the bridge back in alignment, after a tug, with two sand-laden barges , hit the structure late Sunday morning.
In a statement issued shortly after 3PM Sunday, the bridge’s management said at the moment, the team is working to repair retractor span 9 after a passing vessel hit the edge of that span and pushed it out of line, and also broke the connecting end post at spans 8 and 7.
“That caused a slight opening there and no vehicle can be allowed on the bridge out of an abundance of caution, we are working to get this back up as soon as possible, but right now it’s hard to give a specific time,” an unnamed engineer was quoted as saying in a DHB statement.
At approximately 11:31 AM, a vessel bearing the name, DESAL 1, with two tugs-ALPHA 1 and CHAKA- transporting sand was travelling northbound when it hit the edge of retractor span 9 of the Demerara Harbour Bridge. The impact pushed the bridge out of alignment, causing the breakage of the connecting end post at spans 8 and 7, this in turn caused a transom to be warped (slight opening), the Har
bour Bridge said in a statement. The Demerara Harbour Bridge’s management also said the incident caused several buoys to burst.
Since this incident, the bridge has been closed to traffic on both sides and information communicated to the general public.
Minister within the Ministry of Public Works, Deodat Indar, is currently at the site of the breakage conducting checks along with the dispatched work team. “DBHC staff and Contractor are working to get the bridge re-open to traffic after several damaged aspects of Span 9 needed repairs after this morning’s accident. Upon repairing the power module of the hydraulic system, the span will be reclosed, everything is being done to fix this,” Mr Indar was quoted as saying.
The Management of the Demerara Harbour Bridge Corporation says it apologises for the inconvenience caused to the travelling public and assures everyone that its technical team is diligently working to rectify the situation.
The Corporation’s Management says it is is also in contact with the local consignee of the vessel tug and barge.