Nation Other News 03 Dec 2017 Ockhi uproots billbo ...

Ockhi uproots billboards, exposes Thiruvananthapuram corporation corruption

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | RAKESH NAIR
Published Dec 3, 2017, 6:58 am IST
Updated Dec 3, 2017, 6:58 am IST
Advertisement boards above 10 feet in  height and 15 feet in width are classified as hoardings.  
A billboard that collapsed near RKD NSS School at Shasthamangalam during cyclone on Thursday.
 A billboard that collapsed near RKD NSS School at Shasthamangalam during cyclone on Thursday.

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The city corporation's apathy and possibly corruption were exposed when stormy winds lashed the city on Wednesday. The flex boards and hoardings erected illegally  collapsed on vehicles and pavements when  winds with a speed of 70 kmph lashed  areas such as Shasthmangalam, Fort and Nemom. As per the norms, all the hoardings and arches should be made to withstand cyclonic winds of up to 120 kmph. Advertisement boards above 10 feet in  height and 15 feet in width are classified as hoardings.  

"If you check MG Road between Statue and East, you will find several new illegal flex hoardings. Unlike traditional hoardings with hinged ventilation, they don't leave holes making them  vulnerable," said an entrepreneur in outdoor publicity  
Hoardings have to be at least 50 metres away from pavements and flex boards are banned. "The hoardings'  structures have to be rooted on at least three feet of concrete. These concrete basements are never part of the original structure of buildings and are weak with no steel connection inside them.  The corporation building  department rarely checks all these things," he added.

 

Hoardings placed at crucial locations can fetch between Rs 3 lakh and Rs 5 lakh per year to the outdoor publicity agent who pays rent to the building owners. Smaller LED advertisement boards by shops and malls also pose danger as the contract to build them are awarded to the cheapest bids. "LED boards are built with two-inch thick pipe frames. They will bend and fail if a proper cyclone hits us. They will fly and kill people," the expert added.  The corporation officials said that they will crack the whip on the offenders in the wake of the cyclone.

 

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Location: India, Kerala




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