Workers blamed for bridge collapse

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 21 June, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 21 June, 2012, 12:00am


Part of a nearly completed bridge collapsed in the northeast province of Liaoning late on Monday afternoon, and the local government said worker negligence was to blame, as construction procedures had not been properly followed.

The 416-metre-long bridge in Fushun was scheduled to open to traffic on July 1, though the construction bid indicated that it was to be finished by July 30, according to the Liaoshen Evening News.

The bridge was supported by 11 pillars, and pictures posted online showed that the section between the second and third pillars had collapsed onto dry land, though most of the bridge spans a river.

No casualties were reported in the collapse, which occurred around 5pm. Media reports indicated that construction workers were not at the site due to bad weather.

That night, the city government sent a team consisting of officials and experts with the work safety administration, construction commission and public security bureau to the site. The preliminary investigation results, issued on Tuesday, stated that the accident was caused by misconduct in the construction, particularly involving scaffolding.

The bridge is to be one of two being built across the Hun River, linking Fushun with a small island called Yueya. The bridges cost a combined 58 million yuan (HK$71 million) in public funds.

The Fushun Urban Administration Bureau is in charge of the project, according to the construction bid posted on the local government's website.

An official with the city's press office said 'it was not a big problem'. He stressed that construction had not been completed, though he admitted that workers had not followed proper building procedures, saying simply that they committed a 'violation of the code'.

'The experts are still looking into this case, and a further report on the investigation will be issued in one or two days,' he said.

At a press conference on Tuesday night, Fushun Mayor Wang Guifen demanded that thorough investigations be conducted on the other three bridges around Yueya Island.