The Public Works Ministry has assembly a high-level technical team to assess the deteriorating retractor spans at the Demerara Harbour Bridge (DHB), which has led to the closure of the bridge to heavy vehicular traffic until further notice.
Today, Public Works Minister Juan Edghill convened a meeting with the team which comprised of: Home Affairs Minister Robeson Benn, Jerry Mark Goviea of Industrial Fabrications Int., Marcel Gaskin from Marcel Gaskin & Associates Ltd, Ret’d Specialist in Bridges and Designs Joseph Holder, Former Major of the Guyana Defence Force and
former Design Engineer at the Public Works Ministry Bhageshwar Murli; Demerara Harbour Bridge (DHB) General Manager Rawlston Adams, and other engineers from DHB.
Outcomes from today’s meeting after an inspection was conducted include a time-sensitive engineering solution is being finalised and a retraction of the bridge at 08:30H on Sunday (September 6, 2020) to allow for marine traffic, which will be facilitated and supervised by the engineers.
After this opening, marine traffic will be unable to pass for a few days since
aggressive work will be untaken.
In addition, motorists are asked to strictly observe the speed limit on bridge, which is currently 20 mph.
The MInistry said alternatives emergency arrangements for heavy vehicles are being contemplated by way of using a barge.
It was noted too that the high-level Team will continue to conduct daily reviews and if needs be, twice daily, so as to ensure that the works to be done are completed in a timely manner taking into account the importance of this structure and its necessity to
Minister Edghill on Friday made public to the nation the crisis as it relates to
the structural integrity that exists and pointed out that this was known since 2016 and the
matter was raised several times by the engineers to the then Ministers of Public
Infrastructure, David Patterson and Jaipaul Sharma, as well as, the Minister of Finance.
The new Public Works Minister expressed disgusted at the recklessness, mismanagement and maladministration that caused such neglect leading to this current situation.
Nevertheless, Minister Edghill noted that his ministry will continue to engage the management of DHB and is also appealing to all stakeholders, marine vessels and motorist to be patient at this time.
Interruption of vehicular traffic will be announced by the management of Demerara
Harbour Bridge in a timely manner.