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Collapse of antenna prompts safety review

Update: October, 10/2013 - 10:20
In October last year, a 180-metre television tower in northern Nam Dinh Province also collapsed after a storm that hit the region.— Photo dantri

HA NOI (VNS)— The construction ministry plans to inspect the quality of all tower-shaped projects nationwide to ensure their safety following recent collapses of some antenna towers, according to an official from the ministry.

Last week, a 150-metre steel antenna tower of Radio Voice of Viet Nam (VOV) in central Quang Binh Province collapsed after storm Wutip made landfall in the central region, killing two people and injuring another.

In October last year, a 180-metre television tower in northern Nam Dinh Province also collapsed after a storm that hit the region.

Inspections would be particularly made for towers with a heights of 100m or over, said Director of the ministry's Department of Construction Works Quality Appraisal Le Quang Hung.

He said such accidents revealed that tower-shaped projects such as television and radio antenna towers and electricity poles should be seriously checked to ensure safety.

There are hundreds of such facilities nationwide, including projects with a height of 100m or more, which were often built near or within residential areas, posing high risks for people, he said.

"Meanwhile, they were suspected of having structure-related problems,"

The television tower in Nam Dinh Province, for example, collapsed due to a failure to reach the standard requirements of wind loading capacity.

The case in Quang Binh Province was under further investigation, but it was also believed to be caused by a failure to meet design and structural standards, or a failure to keep the tower under regular maintenance, he added.

"It is therefore necessary to carefully reconsider construction planning before deciding to build such towers in residential areas," he said.

After the collapse of the Nam Dinh television tower last year, the ministry required relevant ministries and agencies to report the status of tower-shaped facilities at localities.

"Although all localities and agencies confirmed that their facilities at present still stand firm, their quality could be proved via storms and floods," he said.

"The tower in Quang Binh, for instance, could not sustain the strong winds from the past storm," he said.

Inspections would focus on reviewing the designs, loading capacity and maintenance work of all towers to assure their safety as soon as possible with initial checks being made of towers exceeding heights of 100m.

Project owners would be required to regularly check the structural quality of towers and their loading capacity as well as conduct regular maintenance, he said. — VNS

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