According to the BBC report, “An emergency meeting of the Regional Development Committee was told independent consultants would examine what had happened.” ‘What had happened’ being a reference to the flooding of the newly opened Broadway underpass at the weekend. Except that the project director of the construction company involved has already told us “what had happened”
“No doubt the culvert did its job, it was designed and built exactly in accordance with specifications and put into practice. “But unfortunately you can’t countenance for severe weather conditions like this.”
And in the UTV report
deputy contract manager with the firm that built the underpass, Marty O`Neill, spoke with U105. He said: “It had been through the whole process of checking. Rivers Agency were happy with it, we were happy with it and the Roads Service were happy with the design we put forward, or else nobody would have signed on it. Nobody anticipated the amount of rain we had and I dont think the finger pointing is going to help. We just have to see how we are going to get over this problem and prevent it in the future.”
So the specifications failed to anticipate the weather conditions at the weekend. But is there more to it than that?
Just last month it was opened with much fanfare a year ahead of schedule with Leo Martin, project manager for construction firm HMC, saying the realignment of the Clowney River to the south of the underpass had allowed them to complete the work early.
And from the ministerial press release when the underpass was opened.
Leo Martin Project Director for the Construction Firm HMC paid tribute to his workforce and said: “The decision to realign the Clowney River to the South of the underpass rather than integrate it into the roof slab has been a major factor in allowing us to reprogramme the work to finish this part early. This allowed us to deal more efficiently with numerous overhead and underground services and keep traffic running during the construction.”
The inquiry should be looking at how that particular decision affected events at the weekend..