Efforts commence to remove bridge platform wrecked on Vilimale’ reef

Work ongoing at the Thilamale' Bridge. (Photo /Afcon)

Planning Ministry, on Wednesday, has stated that efforts have commenced to remove the platform used for the construction of the Thilamale’ Bridge wrecked on the Vilimale’ reef from the place.

As part of works under the Thilamale’ project – the Ministry said that a task was undertaken yesterday to install a ‘self-alleviating platform’ required to construct a pillar to be situated at Vilimale’s east-west corner.

They stressed that a technical issue with the platform’s anchor had resulted in it running aground.

“Efforts are currently underway to remove the platform from the area,” Planning Ministry had said.

The Ministry also noted that the geotechnical investigation required for the pillar’s design had been previously carried out in the same area, by use of such a platform.

Commenting regarding the incident, Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Director General Ibrahim Naeem told Sun on Wednesday morning that the agency was assessing possible damages to the reef.

“We will know whether to impose a fine or what will be done if there is any damage to the reef once the assessment concludes,” he said.

Three workers sustained minor injuries in the incident and were treated at the hospital.

The construction of the Thilamale’ Bridge was contracted to India’s Afcons Infrastructure on August 26, 2021. The groundbreaking ceremony for the project was held on August 2, during President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih’s visit to India.

EPA has previously enforced hefty fines over damage to reefs in carrying out such construction projects.