Dangerous footbridge made safe for public use

2018-11-01 06:01
PHOTO: ANDILE SITHOLEGuards rails now span the length of the bridge.

PHOTO: ANDILE SITHOLEGuards rails now span the length of the bridge.

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PARENTS and community leaders in Waterloo can breathe a sigh of relief as eThekwini Municipality has completed the construction of a footbridge that had been left unattended for more than five years.

Parents were concerned that the bridge, which was being used by children, was unsafe and had no safety guard rails.

Coastal Weekly published the story earlier this year after residents approached the reporter for assistance. Resident Hlengiwe Mkhonza said there had been a few incidents reported about people falling off of the bridge.

“We are actually over the moon that, after so many years of complaining about the bridge, our ward councillor and other officials repaired the bridge. It was such a huge concern for all of us simply because it was being used by children and residents when going to Cornubia.”

Ward councillor Johnson Chetty said his secretary, who lives in the area, reported the matter to him after she received numerous complaints from the public.

“On my initial site inspection, I saw dozens of children use this structure to get across the river to cut sugarcane. I also saw adults using the structure to get to and from work in Cornubia. I was appalled that no person had done anything to prevent a potential [incident]. If someone fell or was pushed into the river, it could lead to serious injury or death.

“I immediately wrote to the municipality, who promptly sent an engineer to evaluate. This official was instrumental in ensuring that a contractor was appointed and guard rails were constructed.

“I am quite pleased that this structure, which was built to house sewage piping, is now safe for pedestrians. I am equally ecstatic that the municipality acted positively in this matter,” Chetty said.


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