Mumbai foot overbridge collapses The five who died include two female nurses from Gokuldas Tejpal Hospital, both of who were heading to work for the night shift.
At least six persons were killed and 33 others injured after a portion of the concrete slab of a key foot over bridge (FOB) connecting Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT) to a school on the busy Dadabhai Naoroji Road in south Mumbai collapsed on Thursday at around 7.35 pm.
Built in 1887, CSMT is Mumbai’s primary railway station with 18 platforms for both suburban and outstation trains and a daily footfall of four lakh commuters.
This is the second major bridge collapse in Mumbai in nine months. On July 3, 2018, a pedestrian pathway of Gokhale Bridge over Andheri railway station in suburban Mumbai had collapsed, killing two and injuring five others.
On Thursday, according to the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s (BMC) disaster management cell, the injured were taken to St George Hospital and Gokuldas Tejpal Hospital, both less than a kilometer away from the accident spot.
Apart from public and private ambulances, people at the spot helped in rescue operations and were seen carrying the injured to the hospitals.
A 45-member team from the National Disaster Response Force and the Mumbai Fire Brigade rushed to the spot. Rescue operations went on for over an hour as many were trapped under the debris, officials said.
The six who died include two female nurses from Gokuldas Tejpal Hospital, both of who were heading to work for the night shift. They were identified as Apoorva Prabhu (35) and Ranjana Tambe (40). The others were identified as Zahid Shiraj Khan (32), Bhakti Shinde (40), Mohan Kayangude (58) and Tapendra Singh (35).
Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he was deeply anguished by the loss of lives due to the accident.
Devendra Fadnavis visited the accident spot and announced a probe, saying the guilty will be punished. He said, “The FOB’s structural audit was conducted along with that of other bridges in the city last year. The audit found the bridge to be fit. (This accident) raises a question mark over the audit.” He said he had spoken to the BMC commissioner Ajoy Mehta and Indian Railway officials to “ensure speedy relief measures.”
Mehta said the BMC will “get to the root of this and study how and why the contract auditor declared the bridge to be not dilapidated.”
State education minister Vinod Tawde announced that the Railways and the BMC will conduct a joint inquiry into the incident. “Officials told me that minor repairs were suggested in the structural audit and that the bridge was not categorized as dangerous,” he said. He added the state government will take responsibility of the treatment of all the injured.
In 2016, BMC had conducted a structural audit of 296 bridges, including road over bridges (ROBs) and FOBs. Eighteen of these were found dilapidated beyond repair and needed to be rebuilt. The bridge that collapsed on Thursday was not among them.
After the July 2018 bridge collapse in Andheri, Union railway minister Piyush Goyal had ordered an audit of 445 bridge structures constructed across the Mumbai suburban railway network. The audit was headed by Indian Institute of Technology Bombay (IIT-B) and was conducted by engineers from Central Railway, Western railway and the BMC.
Following the audit, the team decided to shut down the crucial Delisle Road Bridge in Lower Parel. At least five other bridges, or portions of bridges, have been shut for pedestrian and vehicular traffic since then.