Bridge is an accident waiting to happen

Mr Ricky Riva pointing out the damaged road while a vehicle drives on the wrong side of the road to avoid the area.

Three months after the November 9 floods, the Central Avenue Bridge remains unrepaired and a danger to motorists.

As a result of this, Eastleigh business owner Mr Ricky Riva is fed-up with the Ekurhuleni Metro Municipality (EMM) for not attending to the bridge.

“Nothing has been done about the bridge. No one has been here to fix it,” said Mr Riva.

He believes the bridge is a danger to motorists and should not be used by drivers.

He said due to the condition of the road surface, accidents are bound to happen.

The bridge was damaged during the floods when debris, carried by the flooded Eastleigh Spruit, crashed onto the bridge.

Due to his concerns for motorists’ safety, Mr Riva barricaded the bridge in November.

He said he removed the barricade after he was told, during that same month, that the bridge would be attended to and repaired.

“There is going to be an accident on the bridge if the road surface is not repaired,” said Mr Riva.

He explained that when motorists want to cross the bridge, coming from Fountain Road, they have to drive on the wrong side of the road to avoid the damaged road.

“Motorists come to a standstill and wait until it is clear to drive on the wrong side of the road,” said Mr Riva.

The only action Mr Riva has seen so far was the clearing of the rubble left behind by the flood and the filling of the damaged section of the bridge.

The rubble was dumped on the pavement next to the bridge.

Mr Riva believes that pedestrians will be forced to walk on the road to get around the rubble.

In his opinion, this is an additional safety hazard for motorists.

A driver for an Eastleigh company, Mr Daniel Mofokeng, said he is concerned that if heavy rains occur again the bridge will be further damaged.

While driving and waiting to make deliveries, Mr Mofokeng said he sees cars swerving to miss the damaged road every day.

Like Mr Riva, he too is concerned an accident will occur.

Mr Mofokeng added that if the rubble in the spruit is not cleared, the spruit might flood much quicker and make the bridge impassable to motorists.

“All of the business owners in the area are up in arms about the lack of response to the bridge. What do we business owners in Edenvale pay rates and taxes for if nothing gets done?”

A request for comment was sent to the EMM communication department on February 9, requesting comment by February 13 at 9am.

No comment had been received at the time of going to print.

Stephan Lehman

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