Scour to deep excavation caused by water.
In the afternoon hours of April 12, the collapse of the El Alambrado bridge was recorded, which was in charge of uniting Quindío with the department of Valle del Cauca. With videos that were broadcast on social networks, the authorities alerted what had happened and sent rescue units and uniformed personnel to attend to the emergency in which two policemen lost their lives.
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Although the reasons for the fall of the bridge that had been operating for 39 years are still unknown; Orlando Arroyo, a professor at the Faculty of Engineering at the University of La Sabana, told Noticias Caracol that the first thing the authorities should investigate is the excavation caused by water, because the constant passage of liquid could have slowly weakened the structure.
“The first hypothesis that I would investigate in the field, would be scour in the foundation, it is a phenomenon that does or occurs due to the passage of water that weakens the foundation of a structure and that, in combination with other factors, such as the The very weight of the structure, combined with the passing of the cars, can cause the bridge to fail,” stated Orlando Arroyo.
The National Institute of Roads reported that there is a total closure of the La Vieja river due to the road emergency. Taken from Social Networks
After the collapse of the structure, the Comptroller General of the Nation stated that entities such as the Ministry of Transport, the National Infrastructure Agency (ANII), the National Institute of Roads (Invías), in addition to the concessionaires and auditors, would be those responsible for ensuring compliance with the Colombian Bridge Design Standard.
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Due to the collapse of the bridge, the Comptroller’s Office will carry out an investigation to evaluate the preventive actions that were carried out with the structure by the different entities, since this platform had been concessioned to Autopistas del Café since 2006; which connects municipalities and cities in the country such as Manizales, Risaralda and Quindío.
According to a report delivered by the ANII, the bridge had been checked three months ago and showed no damage or evidence of its fall in the 70 meters that the corridor covered, so the fall of the structure remains a mystery; Due to the collapse of the El Alambrado bridge, two members of the National Police lost their lives and 15 people were injured.
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“On behalf of the ANII, the intervention team and the concessionaire are simultaneously evaluating the causes that could have caused this collapse. It is a bridge from 1984, received in 2006 by the concessionaire that has had recurring maintenance, whose last pathology from three months ago did not report failures or concerns that would generate significant effects on its operation and its capacity” William Camargo, president of the National Infrastructure Agency.
During the visit of the Minister of Transportation, Guillermo Reyes, to Quindío to demonstrate the state of the road where the El Alambrado bridge was located, over the La Vieja river, he stated that a military bridge will be set up within the next 30 and 45 days to allow vehicles to pass through the site.
In addition to this, the minister assured that, of the bridges enabled throughout the Colombian territory, 40% would need maintenance, generating the concern of the people who constantly move by land in the country, since Guillermo Reyes asked all the concessions deliver a study in front of the state in which all these structures are located.
“We have 3,800 km of bridges and close to 1,000 km of these bridges (40%) require repair and maintenance, we need all the concessions to submit a study of the conditions of all the bridges to see what state they are in,” were the words of Minister Reyes.