NAIA Skyway construction faces delay

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CAUSE OF DELAY  Motorists pass the broken girder launcher that broke and fell on five vehicles late Monday. Because of the accident, officials fear that the completion of the NAI Skyway project will be delayed. PHOTO BY RUY L. MARTINEZ

CAUSE OF DELAY
Motorists pass the broken girder launcher that broke and fell on five vehicles late Monday. Because of the accident, officials fear that the completion of the NAI Skyway project will be delayed. PHOTO BY RUY L. MARTINEZ

The construction of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Elevated Skyway, which began on January 2 this year, has temporarily stopped and is now facing serious delay.

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This is the result of an accident on Monday when a bridge girder launcher being used in the construction broke loose and fell, according to the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA).

MMDA Chairman Francis Tolentino said the contractor, DMCI, needs to look for a replacement of the girder launcher because the one that fell can no longer be used.

“The construction might be delayed, but we are still hoping that it will be finished in time for the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit this year,” he told reporters.

He said the MMDA will investigate what caused the incident.

“Investigators are looking at two possible angles such as human error and mechanical failure,” Tolentino said.

The bridge girder launcher, an equipment that helps put prefabricated precast girders on prefabricated piers, fell at 3:32 p.m. on Monday.

Although nobody was hurt in the incident, five vehicles passing underneath were damaged.

The incident also caused heavy traffic along the southbound lane of Tramo Road near Andrews Avenue as roads were temporarily closed.

Thousands of passengers bound for the NAIA were affected by the shutdown, which prompted them to just walk to the airport terminals.

The NAIA Expressway is a 1.6-kilometer elevated expressway project of the Department of Public Works and Highways that runs from the Metro Manila Skyway to Andrews Avenue near the NAIA Terminal 3. It will be the first airport expressway in the country. The government hopes to finish the project in October in time for the holding of the APEC summit.

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