‘Structurally safe and sound’ DHB reopens to vehicular traffic
In record time, the Demerara Harbour Bridge has officially reopened to vehicular traffic, following its three-day closure to facilitate the replacement of ‘Span 9’.
The successful reopening of the bridge six hours ahead of schedule is owed to the excellent leadership, planning, coordination, and communication implemented by government and other agencies.
Persons will now be able to safely traverse the bridge, as a result of this high level of planning. An 18-tonne weight restriction will remain in place for laden vehicles.
Prime Minister, Brigadier (Ret’d) Mark Phillips, speaking to members of the media on Thursday evening, emphasised that, as work is ongoing on the construction of a new Demerara River Crossing, it is crucial that the current bridge is maintained.
He said, “We had no incidents, and no injuries, and that speaks to the fact that we were able to communicate effectively to the people of Guyana, and the people responded. We had an orderly situation as we endured the disruption to do what is necessary in order to have this bridge in working order again.”
Meanwhile, Minister of Public Works, Bishop Juan Edghill commended the hard work of all agencies involved, as well as the contractors, InFab and EC Veira, adding that this team effort in executing the arduous task of installing the new span in such a short time is no small feat.
“This did not just happen by accident. It took planning, partnership, and the support and cooperation of a lot of people. As the minister responsible, I deeply appreciate the role that every member of the team and every stakeholder played in getting this done,” the public works minister proclaimed.
Minister within the Ministry of Public Works, Deodat Indar shared similar sentiments, “I am impressed by the work done here. This is dedication, and I think that is a reflection of what public service should be, total dedication to get the end product.”
General Manager of the DHB, Wayne Watson, also lauded the hard work of all the agencies involved and assured that the works completed have rendered the bridge structurally safe and sound.
Thousands of citizens traverse the bridge daily, as it is an integral transportation link, and the only bridge linking Regions Three and Four.
The three-day closure of the Demerara Harbour Bridge saw a cohesive multiagency approach to ensure the replacement of Span 9, which was damaged in September last year. The agencies involved in the successful execution of this task included the Maritime Administration Department (MARAD), the Guyana Defence Force (GDF)Coast Guard, the Guyana Police Force, the Transport and Harbours Department, and the Demerara Harbour Bridge Corporation.