KOCHI: A youngster narrowly escaped from the jaws of death on Monday evening near Kundannoor flyover. As he lost control of his bike while negotiating a large pothole, the youth fell in front of a speeding bus. Luckily, the youngster escaped with a fracture on the left hand. However, a car which hurriedly stopped to help him was hit from the back by a container lorry.
Despite the regular occurrence of similar mishaps, the officials concerned turn a blind eye towards the public plight. In the end, the road filled with large potholes remains as a death trap for several commuters.
The never-ending traffic blocks and pot-holed side roads have generated public outrage against Marymatha Constructions, the contracting firm of Kundannoor flyover. “Marymatha Constructions is showing absolute arrogance while repairing the roads. Whenever they dig up the side roads, the firm won’t inform the traffic police in advance. It happens even at midnight,” said a police official on the condition of anonymity.
As the waterlogged stretch often splash water filled with mud, pedestrians are also bearing the brunt of traffic snarls. “The Works Department is least bothered about unclogging the drains. It is quite difficult to cross the stretch during heavy rain. The bus stops also need to be shifted from the current locations,” said Mahesh, a pedestrian.
At the same time, PWD officials cite their helplessness in repairing the stretch due to the heavy traffic and incessant rain. “Although we fill major potholes with concrete in the busy stretch at midnight, the heavy traffic and rain make our effort go in vain,” said a senior PWD official.
As part of their scientific study, IIT-Madras team inspected Kundannoor flyover on Monday. The four-member team, along with PWD officials, drilled the major span to collect the concrete samples for the ‘core test.’ An ultrasound test will also be run on the structure. Kundannoor flyover is scheduled to be commissioned in March 2020. The state government requested the IIT intervention in the backdrop of Palarivattom flyover developing deep cracks within two years of its opening.
- Bus stop for Cherthala-side buses at Kundannoor should shift to a location near Crowne Plaza to ease the congestion.
- Bus stop for buses towards Vyttila should be taken to the service road.
- The existing U-turn points should be relocated a kilometre further
IIT-Madras officials collecting the core samples from Kundannoor flyover
Following the heavy traffic block at Kundannoor junction, the Maradu Mass Protest Council organised a march to the office of Central Zone Superintending Engineer, National Highway, on Monday. As the traffic snarls even block ambulances and traffic police remain helpless in guiding the drivers to an alternative route, the council called for stringent action in the issue. The march led by activist C R Neelakantan also demanded an exemption from toll at Aroor till the completion of the flyovers.