Several people are feared trapped after a portion of a bridge collapsed in south Kolkata this evening, authorities said.
The Majerhat Bridge on busy Diamond Harbour Road reportedly collapsed around 4.45 pm on Tuesday. A part of the central section of the structure caved in and as a result a few cars, two-wheelers and a bus that were on that section plunged below. Authorities have still not confirmed how many vehicles or pedestrians might be trapped under the rubble.
“I have asked the police to provide details. I am monitoring the situation from here. First we have to rescue persons and provide relief. We will certainly discuss how it happened,” said West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee, who is in Darjeeling.
Top officials including Kolkata Police commissioner Rajeev Kumar rushed to the spot.
“My vehicle was on the bridge when a section of it collapsed. My driver immediately applied brakes and asked me to get off from the car. When I stepped out the entire structure was shaking. Some construction workers rescued at least five persons,” said Sishir Chakraborty, an eyewitness.
“Had the portion that was immediately over the rail tracks caved in, the high tension wires would have collapsed possibly triggering a bigger disaster,” he said.
The last time a flyover collapsed in the city was on March 31, 2016, when a nearly 500 feet section of an under construction structure caved in at the city’s trading hub of Burrabazar killing 27 persons and injuring about 80.On March 3, 2013, a curved section of a flyover at Ultadanga in Kolkata connecting VIP Road and E M Bypass collapsed when a goods truck was passing. The incident happened around midnight and it prevented a bigger accident.