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Contractor not to blame for MMRDA construction site accident: Report

The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) appointed three-member committee to probe the accident at the Eastern Freeway construction site at Wadala in July, in which one labourer died and seven others were injured, has submitted its report. And the report, which took more than two months, gives a clean chit to the contractor Simplex Infrastructure and suggests he cause of the accident was technical and not human error.

Confirming the same, MMRDA Commissioner Rahul Asthana said, “The report submitted by the committee appointed by MMRDA to probe into the matter states that the reason behind the accident was technical and there was no fault on the part of the contractor working on the project.”

Wadala bridge collapse
Deadly fall: Over 100 tonnes of concrete came crashing down after the crane, which it was tethered to, gave way. The concrete slabs fell on parked vehicles and construction workers who were working under the bridge. Pic/Shadab Khan

It should be noted that soon after the accident MMRDA had also appointed an interim committee to investigate the matter. The interim investigative committee had stated that the cause of the accident was the jack on which the girder supports were being launched developing technical problems.

The expert committee report submitted to MMRDA echoes these findings.

The three-member committee formed by MMRDA included professor of civil engineering department from Indian Institute of Technology Rajiv Sinha, chief engineer from Public Works Department SD Tamsekar and MMRDA’s chief of transport and communication PRK Murthy.

Building bridges

The Eastern Freeway aims at connecting Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya in South Mumbai to Eastern Express Highway. It is 16.8-km long and estimated cost is Rs 888 crore. The freeway will drastically reduce travel time between South Mumbai and eastern suburbs, and will also help ease traffic movement towards Navi Mumbai, Pune, Thane and Nashik.

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