Residents of homes adjacent to an alleyway in New Taipei City’s Yonghe District (永和) on Saturday were forced to evacuate their homes after the road collapsed, the New Taipei City government said yesterday.
An 80m by 4m area in an alleyway on Wenhua Road (文化路) collapsed at 10:39am near an apartment building construction site where work was being done on the project’s foundation.
The incident also ruptured an underground gas pipe and tilted several buildings in the area.
Photo courtesy of a reader
Residents would not be able to return to their homes until tomorrow or Wednesday, when repairs are expected to be finished, the city government said.
Workers are injecting grout and rearranging pipelines under the street as part of the repairs, which would take two to three days to complete, Public Works Department Deputy Director Chan Jung-feng (詹榮鋒) said.
A total of 158 people were forced to leave their homes due to structural damage to some of the surrounding buildings, and 84 people have relocated to hotels, while others are staying with relatives, New Taipei City Fire Department data showed.
Although preliminary assessments concluded that the conditions of homes damaged in the collapse were within safety standards, grout injections could reinforce their foundations, Chan said.
The construction company that allegedly caused the incident has admitted negligence, and is to pay a NT$90,000 fine for undermining public safety as well as residents’ expenses incurred by the damage, he said.
The department said the collapse was likely related to mismanagement at the construction site.
New Taipei City Mayor Hou You-yi (侯友宜) said he would uphold rigorous standards in assessing the safety of the affected buildings, and promised residents that the foundation of the street would provide greater stability after the repairs.
“If residents are not at peace with their homes, I would not be at peace, either,” Hou said, in an effort to address residents’ concerns about unsafe living conditions.
Additional reporting by Chen Hsin-yu and CNA
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