A resident of the Slipway Community, Daniel Davis, has expressed fear that constant blasting of dynamite in the vicinity of the Gabriel Tucker and Zuluduma Bridges in Vai Town by unidentified fishermen at night poses a threat to these bridges.
Davis, who is also chairman of the Slipway-Crown Hill Development Association, said if nothing is done urgently by the Ministry of Public Works to arrest the situation, it could cause the early collapse of the two bridges, especially the newly constructed King Zuluduma Bridge.
He alleged that individuals were using dynamite to blast the areas for fish, a practice that could undermine the foundations of the bridges, considering the vibration of the blasts.
The Vai Town Bridge constructed by the Raymond Concrete Pile Company in the 1940s during the President Tubman administration, collapsed in 2000 because of similar situation, Davis warned.
The bridge which was dedicated on December 30, 2011, was named in honor of a former chief of the Dey Tribe who provided the parcel of land used for the construction of the bridge. When contacted, Mr. Jesefu Keita, Director of Communications at the Ministry of Public Works, said the ministry was not aware of the situation, but promised to do a follow-up with his bosses for immediate action.
He said although, they were not aware of the undermining of the two bridges, he expressed concern about the behavior of fishermen over the years which the ministry decisively dealt with. Meanwhile, Keita is also calling on individuals in the habit of blasting dynamite in the area to desist, threatening that drastic action will be taken against anyone caught in the act.