FROM Lateef Taiwo
Commuters traveling along the Benin-Sagamu road can now breathe a sigh of relief as the Federal Road Maintenance Agency (FERMA) has embarked on maintenance work to reinstate the failed sections of the expressway.
Engr. Muktar Abdulrahim, the Federal Road Maintenance Engineer in Edo State, mentioned that the agency has successfully addressed the issue of punching failure on the bridge deck at Isoko camp, a notorious spot known for causing traffic congestion.
He stated, “The failure on the deck has been reinstated, and we are awaiting the completion of the concrete curing period before it can be reopened for use. We use this medium to appeal to motorists and other road users to exercise patience while the concrete undergo the curing period.”
Furthermore, repairs have commenced on other failed sections of the road. Abdulrahim emphasized the need to address the underlying causes before tackling the failures themselves. “We have observed that these failures are primarily due to blocked water channels, resulting in water accumulation on the roadway. To address this, we are actively desilting existing lined drains and constructing additional ones to ensure proper drainage.”
“Our efforts also encompass unblocking weep holes at the Ovia bridge and introducing water channels at the bridge approach to prevent water pooling, a factor contributing to the road’s deterioration. Once these preventive measures are implemented, we will concentrate on rectifying the failures. By addressing the root causes and then conducting the necessary repairs, we are confident that the resulting improvements will stand the test of time,” assured the FERMA official.
Abdulrahim noted that the team has also moved to the Okada area, where a water pond has rendered a section impassable for motorists. “Currently, we are actively working in that region. Our plan involves extensive desilting of the existing carriageway, culverts, and lined drains. We will also construct additional line drains to enhance proper water discharge. Subsequently, we will proceed with repairs on the affected carriageway itself. This will entail stabilizing the base using hardcore and stone base before applying an asphalt.”
The maintenance engineer praised the swift response of Mr. C. G Amos, the Acting Managing Director of FERMA, in addressing the concerns of motorists and promptly mobilizing teams to address the failures.
Recalling recent events, it is worth mentioning that the Edo State House of Assembly had summoned FERMA officials to address the deteriorating conditions of the road, which not only resulted in traffic congestion but also auto accidents.
Regarding other bad sections of federal roads in Edo, Abdulrahim stated that the agency has prioritized repairs based on the severity of the issues. “We are optimistic that in the near future, we will extend our efforts to other roads to commence necessary maintenance,” he assured.
Despite adverse weather conditions, Abdulrahim highlighted that the agency persevered and adopted innovative engineering techniques to initiate repairs promptly and alleviate the difficulties faced by users of this heavily-traveled road.
The outcry is too much. We felt the need to act fast and apply innovative engineering techniques” he explained.