Tree Uprooted Opp to Capitanio School Creating Traffic Snarl during Peak Hours

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Tree Uprooted Opposite to Capitanio School on Mangaluru-Bengaluru NH 75 Creating Traffic Snarl during Peak Hours around 4.30 pm. The main reason for the tree to get uprooted was due to the NH75 road widening work going on and the workers had dug the mud very close to the tree lying on a hillock and left it hanging/tilted for the last couple of months

Mangaluru: Following close on its heels after a huge tree fell near Lalbagh/Lady Hill a couple of days ago, and a few days prior to that a tree got uprooted and fell near Kadri Petrol station (Opposite to Car Decor) and now we are seeing yet another tree coming down opposite to Capitanio School on Mangaluru-Bengaluru NH 75, due to the carelessness and negligence of NHAI workers. The incident which took place during the rush/peak hours around 4.30 pm, left the traffic going from Pumpwell Flyover towards Capitanio/Padil backed up and stuck for a long time, until police had to manage the traffic.

Since the tree after it fell only blocked the half portion of the road near Capitanio school going towards Padil, there was not much of a traffic jam, only that traffic going on that route had to slow down. The falling of the tree damaged two electric poles, the residents in that area are with no power until new poles are erected. Other than damaging two electric poles, there were no injuries or other damages done. Due to heavy rain and high winds knocked down this tree, which was hanging on the loose soil beneath it.

This is one less headache for Mangaluru city Corporation of NHAI officials to face any criticism or objection from the activists/environmentalists, if they had to cut down that tree during the ongoing road work . Similarly there are quite a few old trees on that stretch of that road which may get uprooted or come crashing down during the treacherous monsoon weather, and the concerned authorities have turned a blind eye.

A resident who lives right behind the fallen tree, Aswath Rasquinha speaking to Team Mangalorean said, “Ever since the NHAI workers have cut the road right in front of the entry lane from the NH to our home and other two homes, we have been facing lots of inconveniences due to this. Even with our repeated complaints/requests made to the concerned officials to provide a suitable access to our homes, no one has taken any action. Regarding the tree I had even alerted the officials that there are very good chances that the tree would collapse during treacherous rains and high winds, and today we saw the result. The road was dug/cut very close to the tree which resulted with tree slanting/hanging. Luckily no one was injured since during evening hours many people walk by after work to reach their homes. Other than two electric poles being knocked, resulting in no power in our area, there has been no other damages.

A few shop owners nearby speaking to Team Mangalorean said that they have complained to MCC many times about these dangerous trees which may fall anytime, but no action has been taken from any officials until now. They are very much sure that sooner or later, these trees could crash just like the tree which fell this evening. So coming to the point, lately while scores of old trees have fallen all over the city following strong gales, resulting in damages to vehicles and property, why haven’t the concerned authorities taken any precautionary measures.

Most of the trees had no room for their roots to spread out and this led to gradual decay. In other cases, growing trees had their branches cut regularly on one side, because they leaned on to private property; the trees grew up lopsided and leaned far on to the roads. This means their remaining branches too were regularly being trimmed and they lost strength.

A few officials from MCC say that when they are ready to trim or cut down old and hazardous trees, they are usually stopped by environment activists or Forest dept officials- so they are in a fix. On the other hand, the problem with our MCC authorities is that they wait till the trees fall, and then only take action–like many trees that had fallen due to rains recently. The safety of pedestrians and of all road users should be the first and most important priority for National Highway authorities and also local authorities and also for a State body that has responsibility in this area. Some of these trees may have disease, which is a clear indication of root rot.

Through this report, Team Mangalorean is asking as a matter of urgency with the concerned people at MCC and the Forest department that old and hazardous trees are inspected and those that appear in any way dubious should be promptly removed before they crash down resulting in injuries or death to motorists or pedestrians. And for every tree that is cut, plant 100 or more trees, so at least human lives could be saved ,and also prevent damages to property and vehicles.

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