Harbour Bridge to allow light traffic by Tuesday at 6pm
DPI, Guyana, Tuesday, September 3, 2019
Efforts are underway to have the Demerara Harbour Bridge working at acceptable standards by Tuesday, August 3 by 6pm. This is announced by General Manager of the Demerara Harbour Bridge Corporation, Rawlston Adams, at a press conference on Tuesday morning.
According to Adams, works are ongoing in three phases. These are being executed by a team of 7 engineers with 54 supporting staff along with 1 diver.
“We were able to connect 8 connecting posts, 5 sheaves, 15 shackles and 215 feet of anchor chains,” GM Adams explained. Additional works were also done on wire ropes.
Furthermore, the Department of Public Information (DPI) learnt that while it was announced on Monday that there were 9 anchors to be reconnected, that number was significantly understated.
“Between yesterday to today, that number went up to somewhere about 16,” said GM Adams. This is attributed to the buoys being flooded with water after becoming punctured during the Monday morning accident. The General Manager noted that the damage to these additional buoys was not visible until time would have elapsed on Monday.
“At some locations where we thought that the anchorage was okay, it wasn’t… The vessel was able to drag a lot of those anchors and those anchors are 15tonne anchors.”
As a result, the dragged anchors have caused the buoys to be out of their uniformed position along the bridge.
Nevertheless, the workers have reconnected 14 anchors and 9 connecting posts by Tuesday morning with 4 more to be put in place during the week.
While the General Manager and his team declined to state a fixed date when marine retraction will be allowed, GM Adams stated that retraction will be allowed provided that all systems are in place to do so.
Tuesday’s light traffic across the Harbour Bridge will include cars, motorcycles, some canters and light trucks. Commuters have been using the speedboat service at Vreed-en-Hoop to travel to Georgetown. Boating service was extended 10pm Monday evening to facilitate travellers that have been inconvenienced.
Around 01:00hrs on Monday, a tug and a barge collided with the Demerara Harbour Bridge which resulted in structural damage to several parts of the bridge. Investigations into the cause of the accident are ongoing.
General Manager Adams along with his team plans to meet with the Guyana Maritime Administration (MARAD) and the Ministry of Public Infrastructure in the coming days as the situation is being resolved.