Damaged Gardez-Logar road needs reconstruction
GARDEZ (Pajhwok): The Gardez-Logar highway has been extensively damaged by heavy vehicles in southeastern Paktia province and needs immediate reconstruction, officials and residents said on Tuesday.
They warned if early steps for reconstructing the highway were not taken, the damaged portions would cost equal to building a new road.
Provincial council member, Taj Mohammad Mangal, said the road’s deteriorated condition had created many problems for passengers and drivers. “Big cracks have appeared in the road, which is in a bad condition until Logar province,” he said.
The 118-km highway was constructed by a Turkish construction company six years ago, when it was considered one of the country’s standard roads. But the road started developing holes and cracks from Gardez to Logar due heavy vehicles.
Mangal said further damage to the road would render it useless in the near future if the government did not launch its reconstruction at the earliest.
The public representative said vehicles carrying extra load should be banned from plying the route in order protect it from being damaged once reconstructed.
Driver Zainullah said the dilapidated condition of the road delayed vehicles from reaching their destinations and also caused damage to vehicles.
The taxi driver said if the government did not pay attention to the road’s current condition, then it would have to construct a new road.
He said it had been a standard road when first built, but no care on the part of the authorities concerned shortened its life.
Paktia Public Works director Abdullah Durrani blamed the Gardez-Kabul highway’s rundown condition on heavy vehicles carrying logistics for foreign troops.
He said such vehicles had long been plying the road and they had to some extent contributed to the damage.
However, he rejected the claim that heavy vehicles were allowed to carry goods beyond the permissible weight, saying no such vehicle had been allowed.
The director said the public works department planned to install two high tonnage weighbridges in the Patan border district and on the Khost-Gardez road.
The Public Works Ministry says repair works on the road would be launched soon. Deputy Public Works Minister Ahmad Shah Wahid, who visited Paktia few days ago, told Pajhwok Afghan News that he and their technical team had inspected the road’s condition and repair works would be launched.
He called the road one of Afghanistan’s important highways and said its reconstruction had been made part of the ministry’s plans.
Reconstruction work on the 105km Gardez-Patan road was launched few days ago.
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