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Motorists asked to ‘drive carefully’ as concrete sheets fall from Chalong Underpass walls

Motorists asked to ‘drive carefully’ as concrete sheets fall from Chalong Underpass walls

PHUKET: The chief of the Phuket Highways Office has urged motorists to “drive carefully” while passing through the Chalong Underpass for the next two weeks until a contractor can be called in to prevent more concrete sheets from plunging off the walls into traffic.

Saturday 7 December 2019, 05:45PM


The issue was brought to The Phuket News’ attention by an expat who was driving northbound through the tunnel at about 4:48pm yesterday when one of the concrete sheets fixed to the wall fell and shattered on the road right in front of his car.

The incident was recorded by the car’s dashcam.

Mr Somwang told The Phuket News that the concrete sheet that fell was “only” for soundproofing in the tunnel.

“Our officials drove past and also saw it yesterday evening. We found the sheet had fallen onto the road. We had the debris cleared. There were no injuries and no vehicles were damaged,” he said.

“I think the cause of the sound-absorbing sheets dropping may be from screws becoming rusty because of too much moisture inside the underpass,” he postulated.

The Phuket Highways Office must wait for the contractor, Civil Engineering Co Ltd, to make the repairs, Mr Somwang said.

Asked why the two-week wait, he replied, “It takes time to order the soundproof sheets.”

UWC Thailand

Mr Somwang assured that the tunnel is safe, for now.

“We have already checked the [concrete] sheets. We check the whole project every month,” he said.

“This is also just one incident, and it does not have any effect on the main structure of the underpass,” he added.

Regardless, Mr Somwang urged motorists to exercise caution while driving through the tunnel.

“I can’t be sure when any more sheets will drop again. Please drive carefully and slow until the construction contractor came come and fix it in the next two weeks,” he said.

“If anyone sees any similar problems, please call the Phuket Highways Office directly at 063-6925308 immediately. We will get highways workers to the scene quickly to clear it,” Mr Somwang said.

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Kurt | 09 December 2019 - 16:32:53

Which Phuket thai Authority is responsible for damage to my car due to 'falling off' panels in Chalong Underpass when I drive careful, as advised, through Chalong Underpass.? Where can I claim the damage/repairs? Any address to send the bills? I guess,.....echo!  Dumb irresponsible  government people.

Kurt | 08 December 2019 - 13:21:22

Don't underestimate the danger driving in narrow Chalong Underpass now.
If a panel falls down in front of a speeding car ( and they all ignore the 50kmh advice), the driver react by deviating in direction opposite small lane. A head on head collision with other car is than very well possible. That responsible Officials keep that underpass open is flabbergasting.

Kurt | 08 December 2019 - 13:15:35

A thinking Official.  :-)   To much moisture in underpass? Are the walls not built of sufficient water resisting swimmingpool concrete? Rusty screws? Why in a so called moisture underpass climate not the use of stainless steel screws together with good quality glue?

Kurt | 07 December 2019 - 18:10:20

A enormous 4 years construction time budget project. Probably, the commission part of it was out of proportions. Use of cheaper glue.  hahahaha

Kurt | 07 December 2019 - 18:03:35

Chalong Underpass is now dangerous, a NO GO Underpass if your life and car are important to you.

 

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