All safety standard measures in place for under construction tunnels

The incident of tunnel collapse in Ramban area along Srinagar-Jammu National Highway have raised concerns over safety measures in the under construction tunnels in Jammu and Kashmir. However, the authorities and the tunnel construction agencies involved in these tunnel works have claimed that all the safety measures are well in place to avoid any such incidents. Being constructed on Srinagar-Leh Highway , the 14 kilometres long strategically important Zojila Tunnel is under construction and the work is going on at a very good pace. The project site of Zojila tunnel is located at existing highway (NH-01) starting from Sonamarg (UT of J&K) and ending at Minamarg (UT of Ladakh) at an elevation ranging from 2700m to 3300m, thus making the Zojila Tunnel (13.2 km) the longest tunnel at this elevation in Asia region. The present site location falls into seismic zone IV and all precautionary measures have been provisioned to safeguard the structures provisioned in the project, officials said.


Another 6.5 km long Z Morh tunnel is coming up near Sonamarg area in Ganderbal district which is almost completed.


General Manager National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation (NHIDCL) VK Pant told Greater Kashmir that all the safety standard measures are already in place for the Z Morh and Zojila Tunnel, adding that these are put in place in advance after keeping all the aspects under consideration. “The actual cause of the tunnel collapse in Ramban area is yet to be ascertained, adding that a team of authority engineers from ICT have been sent to Ramban to verify and know the actual cause of the Tunnel collapse and if there are any further measures need to be taken those will be ensured for the under construction tunnels ” Pant said.