Heavy flow of flood water and rain washed away a major portion of a 44-year-old bridge in Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh in the afternoon yesterday. However, displaying presence of mind, local authorities averted a major accident and saved lives. The collapse of the bridge was captured on a smartphone camera. The video shows the old bridge collapsing from the middle under the pressure of the flood water and rain. According to officials, about 76 metre of the 160-metre bridge was washed away. The bridge connected residents of Himachal Pradesh’s Nurpur Tehsil with neighbouring Punjab.
There used to be heavy movement of vehicles and people on the bridge. The sudden bridge collapse could have led to heavy loss of life, had the local authorities not anticipated the bridge collapse in advance. The officials had barred traffic movement on the bridge a day before yesterday when cracks in the pillars of the bridge was noticed. Several bridges collapse during rains every year due to poor maintenance.
Some days ago, about 44 people traveling in a bus had died as a British-era bridge collapsed on Mumbai-Goa highway. The bus fell into swollen river Savitri. Bodies of only 28 people have been recovered, while 16 people are still missing. The Maharashtra government allegedly ignored a warning from UK that bridge was very old and dangerous. The state government had informed on Wednesday that the bridge was to be dismantled in December this year.