Wednesday, December 7

It Never Ends

More Kaohsiung subway problems.Cave-in at KRTC site snarls up Kaohsiung traffic
Tuesday, Dec 06, 2005,

Massive subsidence resulting from water seepage at a Kaohsiung rapid transit construction site snarled up traffic yesterday.

The sinkage occured at the intersection of Chungcheng Road and Tashun Road in Kaohsiung City. The subsidence resulted from the construction of a reservoir well in the area, which suddenly experienced massive water seepage on Sunday night...

According to KRTC general manager Fan Chen-po (范陳柏), this has been the most serious engineering setback in the system's construction.

He said that it did not seem to be the result of human error, and that reconstruction efforts could cost up to NT$500 million (US$15 million).
Okaaaaay, that's what the pro-DPP English paper says. In the pro-KMT paper, Leaders urged to deal with Kaohsiung MRT calamity
The latest massive cave-in caused by an underground water incident at a construction site of the mass rapid transit (MRT) system in Kaohsiung City provided opposition lawmakers new ammunition to attack the Democratic Progressive Party's administrative performance...

A legislator of the opposition Kuomintang (KMT) urged the government to take over the Kaohsiung MRT construction project for public safety in view of the repeated major accidents. Others wanted the national leaders to take responsibility.

The accident was the 10th major construction mishap of the MRT project and the eighth accidents involving public safety concerning the two MRT lines under construction.

KMT Legislator Pan Wei-kang said the Kaohsiung rapid transit railway project needs to be entirely reviewed and examined, suggesting that the DPP government take over the project to help ease public safety concerns.

Meanwhile, several other lawmakers of opposition parties criticized both President Chen Shui-bian and Premier Frank Hsieh, who farmed out the construction of the Kaohsiung MRT lines during his tenure as mayor of the southern city, for continuing to evade the problem for two consecutive days.

They said the two national leaders should step out to face the strings of construction accidents and come up with effective solutions.

President Chen already made it clear in his exclusive TV interview before the local elections last weekend that all the problems related to the Kaohsiung MRT project belong entirely to Hsieh and the Kaohsiung city government...

Opposition members of the Kaohsiung City Council blasted acting Kaohsiung Mayor Yeh Chu-lan and asked her to guarantee that no more accident would take place ever again.

In response, Yeh stressed that the city government and the municipal Department of Rapid Transit System (DORTS) have been doing the best to prevent engineering mishaps...

Councilor Wang Ling-chiao of the opposition People First Party said the problem could have arisen from the fact that the construction cost tendered by the winning contractor for the accident-prone MRT section was just 0.2 percent below the floor price set by the city government.

She also criticized C3 Engineering Consulting Group for failing to do what it was paid for.

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