A4 Hammersmith Flyover
TRANSPORT for London (TfL) has been warned it is putting lives at risk by insisting on a temporary fix to repair the run-down A4 Hammersmith Flyover.
Work on the four-lane flyover, built in the 1960s, began in October after a routine inspection found the internal cables which hold it in place needed to be replaced.
As a result, TfL decided to embark on temporary bridge strengthening plans before a permanent solution is drawn up in 'the next few years'.
That decision has been blasted by a whistle-blowing source close the project who contacted the Chronicle to warn of the dangers of TfL's policy.
They said: “Firstly, if the road was safe why are they developing 'temporary solutions'? Secondly it isn't safe, it could collapse at any point, owing to the nature of its construction and the severe level of deterioration to the structure.
“And by 'next few years' they mean post-Olympics, it's all TfL care about. Also these temporary solutions they are considering involve temporary propping which any structural engineer with half a brain will tell you is almost impossible to do correctly with a structure of this kind.
“The severe level of deterioration isn't just bad, its the worst kind of bad. The post tensioned strands are severely corroded and in some cases completely severed.
“It's not a question of whether the structure will collapse, its a matter of when. TfL are burying their heads in the sand as the cost of replacing this structure will be astronomical and in the process putting the public at risk.”
TfL insist the flyover, which links A4 Talgarth Road and A4 Great West Road, is safe for motorists and say their temporary work will be finished early next year.
Garrett Emmerson, chief operating officer for surface transport, said: “Our key objective is to provide a safe and efficient transport network, which is why we are currently carrying out essential maintenance work on the Hammersmith flyover after detailed assessment of its condition.
“Elements of the bridge, built in the 1960s, are being reinforced but the flyover remains open and safe to use. These works have been planned in close consultation with industry experts.”