An Giang rushing to build detour around collapsed highway

Hundreds of workers, reserve army forces and residents March 24 rushed to evacuate homes that will soon be cleared away to build a detour around the collapsed section of Highway 91 in Binh My Commune, Chau Phu District, An Giang Province.

Site clearance work is carried out March 24 to build a detour around the collapsed section of Highway 91 in An Giang Province (Photo: Tuoi Tre)

The detour will be located 50 meters from the Hau Riverbank, where a 70-meter long section suddenly fell into the river on March 22, and will measure 10 meters wide and 500 meters long.

The province is evacuating 27 households away from the area to clear the site and the Road Management Zone 7 has been assigned to complete the detour within 10 days.

The road section will then be upgraded to meet highway safety standards.

Traffic has been temporarily re-routed to provincial road 941, though it is too narrow to safely accommodate all vehicles.

Thus, until the detour is completed, the provincial People’s Committee has tasked the Road Management Zone 7 and Chau Phu District with building a temporary, 3-meter wide road, which will run parallel to the landslide section at a distance of 300 meters from the riverbank. It will be open for vehicles with fewer than 16 seats to travel through.

The temporary road should be completed by March 26 at the latest, the People’s Committee said.

For safety reasons, all passengers will be asked to disembark from buses when travelling on the temporary road and walk across.

Tran Anh Thu, director of the Department of Natural Resources and Environment, said it will take at least 15 days to modify three eddies in the Hau River, responsible for the highway landslide, with sand bags and stones.

As of March 24, the An Giang Province People’s Committee had spent VND7 billion (US$378,000) for Chau Phu District to evacuate and arrange accommodations for residents.

The Highway 91 landslide has also had a negative impact on An Giang Province’s tourism sector. Over the past few days, several travel companies have been canceling tours to An Giang, said Bui Hong Ha, deputy director of the provincial Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism on March 24.

Meanwhile, Phan Phat Dat, deputy director of the duty-free Thien Thien Phu supermarket in the Tinh Bien trade area, said the number of customers has dropped sharply since the incident. In particular, the transport of goods between Ho Chi Minh City and Tinh Bien has been made difficult and costly, said Dat.

Related articles:
Last of collapsed Highway 91 section falls into river
Mekong Delta highway section collapses into river

By staff writers – Translated by Hai Mien

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