Following days of around-the-clock work by construction workers, all eyes are on the city again following reports that the road will be fit to drive on by today.
Six days ago, in the early hours of 8 November, underground construction work to extend a local subway line caused a road to collapse in front of Hakata Station in Fukuoka City on the southern island of Kyushu. The massive pit that was formed measured roughly 30 metres (98 feet) in width and 15 metres (49 feet) in depth, stretching across a major five-lane road with buildings perched precariously on its edge. Thankfully, there were no fatalities or injuries as a result of the incident, and authorities worked swiftly to contain the damage and begin repair work immediately.
Restoring the road to normal became a major priority for city officials, and three days after the accident, Fukuoka City made the announcement that the road would be re-opened to traffic on 14 November, less than a week after the cave-in occurred. While critics voiced their concerns over the rush job, which would normally take several months to complete, work continued around-the-clock in an effort to meet the 14 November deadline.
▼ A large part of the pit was already filled just two days after the cave-in.
塩葛餅@3日目プ31a (@kzmch_823) November 10, 2016
According to a report by the Mainichi Shimbun, the sinkhole has been filled with soil sourced from other construction sites, with water and cement added for strength in a manner that’s commonly used to fill small and large cavities at underground sites like coal mines and air raid shelters. More than 200 workers have been on the site every day, working tirelessly to fill the pit and restore the road to normal. Damaged sewage pipes and communication lines were fixed on the weekend, and utilities were completely restored yesterday, which is a promising sign that road services will resume today as promised.
While citizens of the city are impressed by the speed of the restoration, many remain concerned about the rushed nature of the work and are hoping that every precaution has been taken throughout the construction process. With the city poised to re-open the road to traffic later tonight, many will be watching events on the live webcam, which was set up by national public broadcaster NHK on the day the incident occurred.
Oona McGee (@OonaMcGee) November 08, 2016
The link above will take you to the webcam, where you can stay up to date with today’s progress on the road re-opening and all the details as they happen live from Fukuoka.
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