Reinforcement pillars of Rangpo Bridge swept away; restrictions in movement of heavy vehicle
Incessant rain is creating havoc in various parts of Sikkim and the neighbouring areas of Darjeeling and Kalimpong hills since October 18. Indian Meteorological Department had issued a weather warning of heavy to very heavy rainfall to occur in Sikkim and around with predictions of major landslides, mudslides and road blockages.Indian Metrological Department had issued an official statement confirming a rainfall up to 20 cm at places over the east and west district on October 19 and heavy to very heavy rain 07-20 cm at one and two places of east, west and south districts on October 20.
The continuous heavy rainfall has led to rise in the water levels of rivers in Sikkim and neighbouring areas. The fierce river Teesta is also creating havoc and tensions amongst the residents residing in the entire stretch of National Highway 10. The rise and heavy flow of river Rangpo chu a tributary of river Teesta has severely weaken the Rangpo bridge connecting Sikkim with West Bengal.
The old bridge was supported with reinforcement pillars which now has been swept away by the heavy flow of river around 2 AM. Sikkim Police informs that ‘the reinforcement pillars have been washed away due to heavy water flow of the river’.
Furthermore, the movement of heavy vehicles (more than 10 tons) have been restricted as a matter of abundant caution. Sikkim Police also informs that the concerned agency is working to restore the reinforcement pillars.