La mayor parte de la estructura del estribo del viaducto 1 de la autopista Caracas-La Guaira se desplomó este domingo, aproximadamente a las 11:45 de la mañana, en el estribo Caracas sólo quedan en pie tres columnas fracturadas y el desplome de la estructura provocó la ruptura de unos tubos de agua.
So many times we don't even realize how close we are to our demise. Take this situation for instance. This bridge is or shall I say was, the only way to and from the airport from Caracas. I never could understand a major city as Caracas and there being only one way to and from the airport. Well actually there are three, but one route, takes you over the mountains and you need a 4X4 and a stomach of steel to take the trip. The other route takes you through the barrios (shanty towns), up over the mountains and then down a windy mountain road, this also you need a stomach of steel and a couple glocks as it's quite a dangerous route to take. So that left the only solid or so we thought road. The viaducto.
The viaducto is actually a bridge. What people didn't realize that it was a rather high bridge that connected you to two mountain ranges. While travelling on the viaducto you don't realize that you are travelling over a bridge. After the bridge, you then travel through two tunnels and finally come out to the other side of the mountain ranges into Vargas state and on to the airport. The folks of Caracas knows that if you are going to the airport that you must allow youself ample time, because the trip can be as short as 35 mins or as long as 1 1/2 hrs depending on what happens to traffic along that road.
The history of the viaducto is that it was built to last 50yrs. Well I think this is year 50 of the structure. All along, the various governments or dictatorships, knew that the road needed to be maintained and eventually repaired or replaced. Well I guess they had other things to do than be concerned with the road, like dictating the country so it remained for the most part unmaintained. Well, withing the last I guess 4-5 yrs, they realized that the structure was sinking. Wow, wouldn't you know??? traffic 24/7, no maintainence and it's 45yrs old. So a hastily attempt was made to try to stabalize the bridge. But that decision came a little too late. So, they decided to shut the bridge down, and build a new alternate road. So how we gonna get to the airport? Yuh got two choices, over the mountain or through the barrios (carterra viejo) the old road. So off the people had to do until the viaje alternativo was finished.
Well, all kind of talk was in place as how to remedy the situation. But no solutions or decisions. Well, I guess as of yesterday the solution was made for them when the bridge finally collapsed. Luckily no one was injured, just the surrounding barrios lost their water supply. I could imagine the horror on the faces of the people that were treavelling the viaje alternativo, as it runs right along the viaducto on the other side of the mountain. So you can imagine the the rumblings, the mountain shaking and the dust and debris. The only thing left standing from the structure is the columns that use to support it.
Sometimes, things needs to be taken in their own hands if there is to be a solution and yesterday the viaducto did just that. Just imagine, how much our lives were in danger travelling over that bridge and we didn't have a clue.