Indian Railways Resumes work for world’s highest rail bridge with COVID-19 precautions

The construction work on the world’s tallest railway bridge starts amid lockdown! The development work on Indian Railways’ Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla Rail Link (USBRL) project has started after taking permission from the government. The Chenab Bridge, which is a part of the USBRL project will soon become the world’s tallest railway bridge.

According to Piyush Goyal chaired Railway Ministry, the construction work on the 359 metre high Chenab Bridge has started amidst the lockdown period, imposed due to the novel coronavirus outbreak. However, all COVID-19 safety precautions are being ensured at the construction site, the ministry said.

According to the Railway Ministry, many COVID-19 safety precautions are being ensured including sanitization prior to entry of workmen, entry of workmen into handwash area by maintaining physical distance, contactless handwash facility, safety shoes disinfection, digital thermal scanning, briefing by safety department and doctor, etc.

In the 111-kilometre long stretch between Katra and Banihal, which is a part of the USBRL project, the Chenab bridge forms a crucial link. The Chenab rail bridge will be 35 metres taller than the iconic Eiffel Tower in Paris! Also, once the construction work is completed, the Chenab railway bridge will surpass the record of China’s Beipan river Shuibai rail bridge (275 metres).

Earlier this year, Chairman of Konkan Railways, Sanjay Gupta was quoted in a PTI report saying that the construction of the railway bridge over the river Chenab is the most challenging task of the Kashmir rail link project, carried out in Indian Railways’ 150-year-long history. According to him, being developed in hostile terrain, the structure has used more than 5,462 tonnes of steel and the bridge has been designed to withstand wind speeds of up to 260 kmph. The Chenab railway bridge will be 359 metres above the river bed. An ambitious project, which was declared a national project in 2002, the USBRL will connect Kashmir Valley to Indian Railways’ network.