Cases of Disaster

March 23, 2006.
The highway bridge destruction by landslide movement in Venezuela
Masaichi NAGATA
JICA expert in Venezuela

The bridge (named as Viaducto No.1.) in the middle of the highway which connects international airport and Caracas, a Venezuelan capital, has broken by landslide on March 19.

figure 1 Location in Venezuela

figure 2 position figure in viaducto No1

This bridge is concrete arched bridge of 320m longs, built over the Tacagua River in 1953. Landslide movement including bridge abutment of Caracas side was confirmed since 1980's. An area of landslide is about 0.1k?. The infrastructure ministry which managed the bridge observed a landslide and reinforced a bridge. Around landslide district, there are many houses of the poor stratum, and basic measures hadn't be done.

Big deformation of the bridge occurred in the beginning of January 2006, and the infrastructure ministry closed to traffic from January 5.

The bridge was destroyed from central part and fell below on March 19. Weight of the wreckage which fell is about 12,000t.

Venezuelan government will to build a new bridge of 900m long in the upper course side of this bridge. The new bridge construction period is about 3 years.

photo 1. Overview of the bridge. (Dec.2005)

photo 2. Present situation (March.22)

A lot of houses received the damage by a disaster of this time, and Venezuelan government will carry out measures to move a house of a district.

photo 3 . Present situation (March.22)

photo 4 Cracks of the road(March.22)