The 2018 floods in Kerala had certain moments that are seared into our memories — the NDRF officer running through Cheruthoni Bridge in Idukki with a child seconds before the bridge was submerged, a pregnant woman whose water bag had ruptured and was stranded in a building, being airlifted. But among these, the scene that would give one the chills was a portion of a road in Malappuram caving in, with both sides of the road being separated by the gushing water.
Months after the incident, the road has been restored and is serviceable, informed Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Monday. On August 9, 2018, a portion of Wandoor-Naduvath-Vadakkumpadam road in Malappuram, caved in as heavy rains and the subsequent floods pounded various parts of the district. “This is one among the many roads that have been rebuilt on a war footing basis,” the CM announced on his social media pages.
The stretch of the road was renovated at a cost of Rs 25 lakh.
Remember that sight of a road being washed away in the floods of 2018?— CMO Kerala (@CMOKerala) February 11, 2019
That road has been restored and is now serviceable.
The Wandoor - Naduvath - Vadakkum Padam road in Malappuram is one among the many roads that have been rebuilt on a war footing basis. pic.twitter.com/cvtGn23Iz6
"In August, the two culverts under the road gave way due to the floods, which caused the road to cave-in. It has never happened before,” recalled the Chief Engineer of the Public Works Department (PWD) in Malappuram.
“We took up the reconstruction of this stretch of the road on September 13 and completed the work, including laying concrete, in December 2018. We have also increased the height and width of the culvert from 1.5 m x 1.5 m to 3 m x 3 m,” he told TNM.
The day after the road collapsed and disrupted vehicular movement and rescue operations, a 30-member Military Engineer Task Force, headed by Captain Kuldeep Singh Rawat, had constructed a 40-ft-long improvised temporary bridge using palm trees. Although this allowed people to walk over the bridge, vehicles were still cut off from this path.
The Chief Minister also added that the Public Works Department and Local Self-Governments are rebuilding bridges and roads which were destroyed in the floods across the state.
“PWD has completed repair works of 4,429 km length of roads; 164 works were completed. A total of 429 works, which extends to a length of 3,148 km, are in the final stages of rebuilding. The construction of designed roads, which are built to last long, is also progressing; 64 of these are under construction,” the CM’s post read.