Durban highway bridge damaged by fire

2015-06-05 17:49
(Picture: Supplied)

(Picture: Supplied)

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Durban - A runaway veld fire that set alight liquefied petroleum bottles has resulted in the partial closure of a major highway bridge in Durban until structural engineers have determined it is safe to drive on.

eThekwini Metro spokesperson Tozi Mthethwa two lanes of the M4 southbound were closed to traffic after the fire on Friday morning and would remain closed until structural engineers had finished examining the bridge.  

“Due to the excessive heat and flames, there was a threat to the concrete structure supporting the M4 South freeway and structural damage to the bridge. City engineers have been tasked with assessing the structural damage,” she said.

She said the fire had set off the LPG bottles at a plant near the bridge, causing an explosion and a high-intensity fire which was eventually doused by the eThekwini Metro fire brigade.

Black plumes of smoke could be seen from as far away as Queensburgh and Durban North, about 20 to 30km away.

The M4 South freeway was initially closed off in both directions, but two of the four lanes going in either direction have since been reopened.

Mthethwa said the remaining lanes would be reopened after repairs, which could take a few months.

Read more on:    durban  |  fires
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