A KES 1.2 BILLION Sigiri Bridge in Budalangi Constituency collapsed 26th June a fortnight after President Kenyatta visited to inspect its construction. The project is under construction by Chinese Overseas Construction and Engineering Company (COVEC). The bridge in Busia County is to link Bunyala North and South wards across River Nzoia.
The preliminary Statement on the Sigiri Bridge collapse by the Principal Secretary of Infrastructure Eng. John Mosonik indicated that the bridge comprises three spans of 25metres at both ends and a 50 metres middle span. It is the middle span of the bridge which is still under construction that collapsed.
Construction of the 25 metres end spans is complete while the casting of the deck slab for the 50 metre middle span was just being completed over the weekend of 23rd-24th June 2017. “The Kenya Rural Roads Authority (KERRA) has despatched a team of top Engineers to site to investigate the cause of the failure of the structure and will release more information as it becomes available. KERRA is also planning a detailed Geotechnical and Structural investigation to establish the cause of the failure.” Eng. Mosonik indicated.
He also said further that further construction has been suspended until the investigation is complete and the reason for the collapse is determined. He also said the possibility of sabotage has not been ruled out and relevant government organs will pursue this angle.
During the presidential inspection, Project Manager Jerome Xzue Hua said they were focusing their attention on the concrete slab and embankment. “We did not focus much on road construction on the north side because the most critical point of construction is the bridge’s slab.
We expect to complete the bitumen work at the end of June for the entire 3 kilometres for both the northern and southern parts,” he had said. The project was to be finished by the end of July.