19 February 2013

Nigeria: What Is the State of the Third Mainland Bridge?

FOR users of the Third Mainland Bridge, fresh concerns over the bridge's health have emerged beyond the repairs conducted between July 7 and October 30, 2012 by the Federal Ministry of Works.

Report by Professor JHT Kim, Head of The Concrete Structural Engineering Laboratory, Yousei University, Seoul Korea, who conducted an underwater examination of the structures holding the bridge last December has reported that the damages to the structure was worse than what he had been briefed.

The Senate had, therefore, set up a committee, made of Senate Committee on Works as well as some officials of the Federal Ministry of Works, to investigate the report and get back to the house in two weeks time for decision to be made.

The report produced by a company experienced in underwater surveys indicated that the underwater metal casing, housing the concrete piles on which the bridge stands has rusted and this may have accounted for the vibration experienced in some portions of the bridge which led to the closure of the bridge for repairs between July 7 and October 30, 2012 by the Federal Ministry of Works.

The Professor's report also indicated that there was progressive steel caisson deterioration in about 1,318 foundation piles and that there was extensive reinforcement bar deterioration in eight piles.

Bridge is safe, says FG

THE Federal Ministry of Works has debunked the claim that the Third Mainland Bridge in Lagos may collapse soon unless the Federal Government undertook comprehensive rehabilitation of the bridge.

Reacting to the claim, the Director of Highways Design (Bridges), Federal Ministry of Works, Mr Aniete Effiong, an engineer said "the Ministry has taken proactive steps in line with its mandate to ensure that the Third Mainland Bridge, a very important infrastructure investment of government, is protected and kept in an acceptable service state."

The Federal Government's position is contained in a 'Federal Ministry of Works Report on the Third Mainland Bridge' released penultimate weekend. According to Effiong, the bridge which is 11.8 km long, was constructed in two sections.

The first section, from Lagos Island to Ebute Metta (Adeniji Adele Interchange-Adekunle Interchange) which has a box girder arrangement cantilevered from the pier to the mid-span was completed in 1979 by PGH, a consortium made up of Messrs Borini Prono, Messrs Girola and Messrs Hiconi.

The second section from Ebute Metta to Oworonshoki which was later completed in 1990 by Messrs Julius Berger Nigeria Plc. (JBN) is a multi-span structure.

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