Traffic nightmare as Ratchayothin flyover bridge closed around the clock

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Motorists were stuck in traffic on Ratchadapisek and Paholyothin roads for longer period than usual on the first day of the 24-hour closure of the Ratchayothin flyover bridge since Tuesday midnight.

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Traffic snarl for both in-bound and out-bound of the two roads was so bad that several frustrated bus commuters were seen leaving the stationary buses in droves and chose to walk instead under the hot sun.

Besides the complete closure of the flyover bridge, the traffic lanes on Ratchadapisek road were reduced from five to three, hence further worsening traffic condition. The impacts from heavy congestion on Ratchadapisek road spread to Prachanukul intersection which is normally congested, Ratchavibha intersection and Vibhavadi Rangsit highway and Ratchada-Lat Phrao intersection.

Pol Col Samroeng Suanthong, deputy commander of 2nd division of Metropolitan Police Bureau, said Wednesday that additional police had been deployed to direct traffic.

Because of the heavy congestion, he said traffic lights were manually operated instead of automatically.

The Ratchayotihn flyover bridge will remain shut until November 6 so police can assess traffic situation and later mete out proper traffic management when the bridge is to be demolished and a tunnel will be built on Ratchadapisek road.

Construction work will take two years and motorists are advised to avoid the construction area.