Road cave-ins have become a regular feature in many of India’s cities. The latest casualty was Anna Salai, situated in the heart of Chennai, where a portion of the road caved in on Thursday morning.
The Chennai Traffic police said that the road caved in owing to the metro construction taking place on Anna Salai. Traffic was thrown out of gear, as the incident occurred during peak hour traffic in Anna Salai, formerly known as Mount Road, with a slow build-up of vehicles.
Following the cave-in, the police made the prime road a one-way, allowing vehicles only on one stretch.
Chennai’s Traffic Police also put up an alert on Facebook urging residents to take alternative routes.
“A portion of road on Anna Salai near Church Park Convent has been unserviceable due to foam discharge caused by CMRL activities. Due to the sudden foam discharge the traffic movement from Anna Salai and Whites Road towards Gemini flyover ( outgoing direction) is slow moving. Vehicles are allowed in only one lane in front of church park convent.
Motorists may take alternate route via Anna Salai - Whites Road - Condron Smith Road - reach Dr Radhakrishnan Salai and reach their destination or Anna Salai - GB road - Tower Clock - Wheat croft Road - Royapettah High Road - Dr. Radhakrishnan Salai and reach their destination.”
Nishanth Krish, an eye-witness told TNM, "There is a metro work going on near Church Park because of which there is traffic between Royapettah and Gemini bridge. There were also ambulances stuck in the traffic. There was heavy traffic on the road which connects Whites Road and Anna Salai. It usually takes me 10 minutes from Mylapore to Spencer Plaza (4.5kms), today it took 40 minutes. Police personnel were also not able to manage the traffic."
Thursday’s road cave-in was hardly the first time in Chennai. In December 2015, a giant crater was formed along the Anna Salai-Vijayaraghava Road in Teynampet. On that occasion to, the road cave-in was blamed on the metro construction.
A 10-foot stretch on Poonamallee High Road, another arterial road in Chennai caved in in June 2015 owing to tunnelling work for the Chennai Metro Rail. The cave-in even witnessed a car getting stuck in the crater. However, the occupants in the vehicle escaped unhurt.