Crashes on Sogakope bridge claim five lives

Sogakope- Five persons have died in crashes on the deteriorating Sogakope Bridge that spans the lower part of the Volta River.

Mr Emmanuel Louise Agamah, District Chief Executive (DCE) for South Tongu, says the bridge is now a death trap and needs urgent repairs to save lives.

Speaking to the Ghana News Agency, he said, “This bridge is an important link in the Abijan – Lagos Corridor Road but it is detoriated now. The expansions have detoriated. There are pot holes on the bridge and whenever drivers and motorists try to dodge the potholes, they crash in the process leading to numerous deaths.

Even this year, five people have lost their lives while serveral others have sustained injuries on the bridge. The residents are angry and want to demonstrate but we usually have to calm tempers down. I have sent letters on several occasions to Ghana Highways Authority and I have ask questions on when this bridge will be repaired but to no avail. “

Mr. Amadu Kormpalla, Station Master, Sogakorpe Lorry Station, who was a worker during the construction of the bridge, told the GNA that, “The rods on which the bridge is resting on are very tinny and if you take a careful look, you could see that they have all rusted and look very weak. See, this bridge will kill about thousands of people one day before authorities will take any action.”

Community members, drivers and motorists told the GNA that they were afraid the bridge would give way and bring about a lot of deaths because part of the 650 meter bridge shook even when motorbikes passed on it yet heavy trucks are allowed to use it.

“We have only been praying that God will protect us throughout the day because this is what we do for a living. We tried to demonstrate but the DCE calmed us assuring us that it will be done in Easter and till date, no sign of even the contractor, ” Sammy, a driver, stressed.

The GNA observed that the rubber covering of the metals that held the colomns of the bridge had worn out whiles the steel rods that sat between the slabs had also corroded thus creating pot holes on the bridge.

Human waste, sand and plastic waste had also collected at both ends of the bridge.

Source: Ghana News Agency