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NHA declares Hub bridge connecting Karachi safe for travelling

KARACHI: National Highway Authority (NHA) on Saturday declared the bridge over Hub River connecting Karachi as safe for travelling after footages shared on social media highlighted its dilapidated condition, ARY NEWS reported.

Clarifying the matter, the NHA said that the 530-metre long bridge at Hub River was built 50 years back and has a strong structure without any technical faults.

Director NHA Kashif Ali Shaikh said that illegal digging for reti and bajri at the river exposed the piles of the bridge and were later strengthened using RCC and steel jacketing in 2017-18. “The structures are now safe after the repair works,” he said.

He said that although the recent rains and flood in the river caused damage to the outer walls of the bridge constructed by the NHA, however, its inner structure is intact.

The NHA official said that they would carry out the repair works at the damaged outer wall of the bridge to further strengthen the piles, in order to save it from any major flooding in future.

He said that the major issue faced by them was an illegal lifting of reti and bajri, which has exposed the inner structure of the bridge.

Read More: Strategic Karachi to Hub bridge at N-25 on the verge of collapse

“We have strictly recommended local administration to impose a ban on lifting the material from the river,” he said adding that reti and bajri needed for the entire city is being lifted from Hub River and therefore, various influential people are involved in this illegal act.

Meanwhile, the NHA has also proposed construction of a new by-pass between Karachi and Hub, suggesting that the old bridge over Hub River could be used for routine traffic while heavy traffic would be diverted to the new bridge.

“We are in touch with the structural experts to re-assess the bridge over Hub River,” the NHA official said.

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