Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Ill-fated Rangchang Steel Bridge that colapsed last December



Today I happened to cross the Rangchang Khola Bridge, the very steel bridge that is in news after its collapse few weeks back. More of a first time happening Bridge collapse in Sikkim, I was taken aback when I heard the news for the very first time. I was still at Dalapchand when the incident happened and I received a call from Bajgain daju wanting me to find information about the incident.
When I came across the debris of the ill-fated steel bridge I wasn’t able to believe that this was the very bridge that I had walked through when I was on the visit to Mangan and its surroundings during Earthquake relief work. I still remember clicking photographs of the panoramic beauty of the valley from the bridge.
More than ten people had died when a concrete steel bridge collapsed over Rangchang khola (river) around 1.15 pm in North Sikkim. According to news media the bridge collapsed due to the weight of a 48 wheelers truck carrying power equipment. The truck was loaded with heavy weight transformer of 1200 MW Teesta Urja Company. The truck with eight persons on board plunged 70 ft below in the Khola near Dikchu.
The 85 meters long steel bridge was located 11 kms from Dikchu towards Singtam and was designed with RCC decking. It was inaugurated on 3rd of April 2009 to replace a Bailey bridge. It was constructed by Mohan Bajaj, Sikkim under 87RCC 499 RMPL 764 TF.