Arches of collapsed Yilan bridge removed, port operations resume

Taipei-Most of the arches from the collapsed Nanfang'ao Bridge in Yilan were removed from the port area Thursday, allowing fishing boats to freely come and go, the Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) said that day.

The removal of the 320 tonne arches was completed at 10 a.m. after 26 hours of work, according to MOTC Deputy Minister Huang Yu-lin (???).

Huang said the construction team next plans to remove the part of the bridge that remains underwater, with the schedule to be discussed with prosecutors so as to ensure no evidence is damaged or lost.

After the debris is cleared from the port, a new bridge is expected to be completed within three years, Huang added.

Huang said the new bridge, which could cost NT$520 million (US$16.9 million), will be contracted to the team that was responsible for the Suhua Highway improvement project, a road that cuts through the mountains along Taiwan's east coast to replace those sections vulnerable to landslides and road collapses.

The landmark Nanfang'ao Bridge collapsed at about 9:30 a.m. Oct. 1, injuring nearly a dozen people and killing six migrant workers when it crashed down onto three fishing boats in the port.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel