At least six people were killed and 32 injured as a major portion of a foot overbridge near the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT) railway station in Mumbai collapsed on Thursday evening. On Thursday, when I walked across the bridge a couple of hours before the collapse, I felt it was a little shaky.
This happens to be the second ever incident of bridge collapse in the last one year in Mumbai. Mr. Mehta also ordered the filing of an FIR against and the blacklisting of D. D. Desai, the structural auditor. "Senior officers are on spot". Fire engines and an ambulance were also at the site. Mumbai Police said the bridge used to connect CST railway station's platform no. 1 with BT Lane near the Times of India building.
"Thankfully, when the bridge collapsed, it was red signal at the nearby road, otherwise several people would definitely have been crushed under the rubble", said a taxi driver, who luckily escaped the tragedy.
The part of the bridge at Cama Hospital end collapsed and at least 34 people were admitted to the hospital after the incident. Railway Minister Piyush Goyal expressed "sincere condolences to the family of the victims" and said the railway doctors and personnel are assisting the local authorities grapple with the tragedy.
Rescue work in progress after a foot overbridge near CSMT station collapsed in south Mumbai Thursday March 14 2019. | PTI
The bridge near VT Station, just a stone throw away from Anjuman e Islam Campus, collapsed at the time when a large number of people reach the railway station to catch trains back home after day's work. This means it needed minor repairs only. He further said, "Weeks before an audit of the bridge took place in 2018, the BMC changed the tiles at the bridge. This is the failure of the government and the system", he added. Our investigation will be independent of the action taken by the civic body.
The issue of dilapidated bridges in the city came to fore after the Gokhale Bridge at Andheri collapsed past year.
"During that audit, 354 bridges were checked for their structural soundness".