Continuous downpour wreaks havoc in WNB

Major maintenance work is needed to rebuild the Ivule Bridge in West New Britain Province.

The bridge was washed away by flood last weekend following continuous rain in the province, which has wreaked havoc to properties and infrastructure.

One of the bridges that connects Bialla and Kimbe along the New Britain Highway was severely destroyed, leaving commuters stranded on either side of the road.

Provincial Works Manager John Sitapai said bridges along the New Britain Highway, especially Ivule and Tiauru, are at major risk when it floods, which is also a threat to local economy.

He added that a team from the Provincial Works and Hargy Ltd have mobilised at the site to do some temporary work.

However, Sitapai is calling on the National Government, through the Department of Works, to build a permanent bridge to avoid such damages in the future.

Meantime, West New Britain Governor Sasindran Muthuvel also raised grave concern on the temporary bridge built and called on the Government to build a permanent one.

He is cautioning drivers of 30 tonne fruit trucks and log trucks and tankers running on the ailing infrastructure to drive slowly going forward.

The Hargy general manager also raised concerns that the destruction of Ivule Bridge will hamper their production as the bridge is the only connection between the growers and the mill.

(Commuters being forced to cross the Ivule River)

Freddy Mou