Portion of Accra-Aburi road closed over rock slide

aburi rockFOLLOWING public outcry on dangers posed by sedimentary rocks dislodging unto the Aburi-Accra carriageway, on the Akuapem ridge, the Ghana Highway authority has temporarily closed that section of the road.

The rocks, which dislodged in May, last year, are gradually drifting unto the main road, creating panic among motorists who hold the notion that the rocks may, one-day, fall on the road and cause havoc.

Mr Micheal Abbey, the Chief Executive Office of the GHA, in a telephone conversation, told The Ghanaian Times that the situation as being assessed and would, by Wednesday, take a firm decision whether to, temporarily, close that portion of the road to traffic.

He said a contract has been signed with CST Ghana Limited, a construction firm, to build a slope protective cover around the ridge to prevent the rocks from falling onto the road adding that the contractor is mobilising to go to site.

“These rocks have been threatened by human activity and due to their sedimentary nature, could easily dislodge and expose motorists and other commuters to grave danger” he said.

Mr Abbey indicated that the project, which begins this January, would be completed in seven months under a design and build module at a cost of GH¢11.7million.

He said enough public education would be undertaken if the road is to closed to traffic during the period of the construction.

The CEO urged the public to bear with the authority because any decision taken would be in the supreme interest of the country.

The Ghanaian Times in its May 13, 2014, edition, reported that the then Minister of Roads and Highways, Alhaji Amin Suleimani urged the Akwapim South District Assembly to stamp its authority and stop illegal human activity going on on the Akwapim Ridge, in the Eastern region.

He cautioned that the building of structures, stone mining and the use of heavy machinery on the landscape especially without approval from the appropriate authorities, could result in result in rockslide, which could fall on the road and endanger the lives of motorists and the developers themselves.

He said this when he inspected part of the ridge near the Peduase lodge that had developed deep cracks along the Aburi-Accra road.

The rocks on the Akwapim ridge began to fall unto the Aburi-Accra road seven years after contractors had cut through the mountainous stretch during the construction of the road.

The boulders which acted as a retaining wall has now become a source of concern as they fall unto the road uninhibited.

The situation has been aggravated by developers who are putting up huge mansions on the hill close to the road, while others use heavy machinery to cut into the rocks.

The rocks in the area are made of weak sedimentary rocks that have undergone several alterations and not as compact as others rocks and often break into slides at the slightest disturbance.

The call to the developers to seek profession help before putting up structures on the ridge went unheeded.

By Lawrence Vomafa-Akpalu

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