A forensic investigation to determine the cause of the N3 pedestrian bridge collapse is underway, says Transport Minister Joe Maswanganyi.
Speaking following his visit to the site of the collapse on Thursday morning, Minister Maswanganyi appealed for the investigation to take place and discouraged any uninformed speculation as to the cause of the bridge collapse.
The unused pedestrian bridge collapsed in the early hours of Wednesday, resulting in the full closure of the N3 north and south bound between the M2 Geldenhuys and N3 Gillooly's interchanges.
On Thursday, following a briefing from the South African National Roads Agency Limited (SANRAL), Ekurhuleni Metro and officials from the Gauteng Provincial Government, the Minister declared the road open.
The Minister also expressed government's relief that no fatalities have been recorded as a result of the incident.
However, Minister Maswanganyi is saddened that five people were injured in the incident. Three of the five people sustained serious injuries, with one person said to be in a critical condition.
"On behalf of government, we wish those who were injured a speedy recovery. Through our agencies, we shall reach out to them to offer the necessary assistance," said Minister Maswanganyi.
Minister Maswanganyi commended SANRAL for the work it has done in clearing the debris in as short a period of time as possible.
"This has ensured that we minimise the disruption of traffic flow on a route with an average daily traffic of 200 000 vehicles. Delays in opening the road would have greatly inconvenienced thousands of motorists and delayed the movement of freight on what is one of our busiest roads in Gauteng," said the Minister.
Minister Maswanganyi also commended all officials from the three spheres of government for the cooperation they displayed from the time the incident was reported and during the rescue and clearing operations.
"Their display of cooperative governance was admirable," he said.