Under-construction Chenab river bridge can withstand quakes, blasts

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 13 Nov 2017 09:02:33


By Anil Bhatt,


AN under-construction railway bridge over the Chenab river in Jammu and Kashmir’s Reasi district, billed to be the world’s highest, can withstand earthquakes measuring up to eight on the Richter scale and high-intensity blasts, railway officials have said.

The arch bridge, a part of an ambitious railway project connecting Kashmir to the rest of the country, will have a “security setup” against possible terror threats and quakes, the officials said.

The work on the Rs 1,250-crore bridge, which will be 359 metres above the Chenab river bed and stand 30 metres taller than the iconic Eiffel Tower in Paris, will be completed by May, 2019. As Jammu and Kashmir is faced with terror activities and prone to earthquakes, M K Gupta, Member (Engineering) of the Railway Board, said that the railways “will put in place a security setup against any such threat in consultation with defence forces”. “The bridge has been designed in such a way that it will withstand an earthquake measuring eight on the Richter scale. There will be no damage to the bridge,” said Gupta, who began the work on putting the main arch on November 5.

He said that a detailed, site-specific seismic analysis has been carried out by experts from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Roorkee, and the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore. “The bridge has also been designed with anti-terror features in consultation with the Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO),” a senior engineer working on the project said, without explaining further. The bridge, a part of the Udhampur-Reasi-Anantnag- Srinagar-Baramulla railway project, can withstand a blast of 30kg of explosives, the engineer said.

The overall length of the bridge is 1,315 metres, having 17 spans, of which the main steel arch portion across the Chenab river is of 476 metres in length and its height is 359 metres above the river bed.