Four accidents occurred on the landmark Sinamalé Bridge in less than 24 hours after it was opened to the public Friday afternoon.
Local media reported two motorbike accidents while a social media user posted a video of the aftermath of a motorbike collision with a bus. No serious injuries were reported.
But police only confirmed one accident.
A “minor accident” took place around 1 am on Saturday, a police spokesman told the Maldives Independent. No one was injured.
Photos were circulating on social media about three accidents before 11 pm on Friday night.
Earlier in the day, the Maldives Transport Authority advised the use of helmets when driving two-wheeled vehicles across the 1.39km bridge. But helmets are not mandatory by law.
The speed limit is between 25 to 50 kilometres per hour.
A police circular cautioned not to drive with children who could not sit on their own and reminded drivers that overtaking other vehicles, changing lanes, or making U-turns on the bridge would be illegal.
A motorbike accident also occurred Friday on Malé’s ring road, which was reopened the previous night.
Stretching from the industrial village on the southwest corner to the Hulhumalé ferry terminal on the eastern waterfront, it is the only road in the capital with four lanes. Parking has been banned as a safety measure.
The outer road was rebuilt and expanded to 12 meters to accommodate buses and traffic from the bridge.
The US$200 million bridge connects the capital via the airport island Hulhulé to its suburb Hulhumalé, a reclaimed island under development as a new urban centre.
Things that should be mandated are merely a suggestion and you wonder why this country is in the state it is.
— Ani (@anibushry) September 8, 2018
Accident count 4. Where do I buy a helmet again? 😅 https://t.co/4xlWFNGWCP
— Yaante 🤔 (@yaanteoa) September 8, 2018
Do you think we would be able to reduce accidents if people actually knew the rules of the road/driving? https://t.co/VUv3ps30xX
— Jin (@AlifuNaaif) September 8, 2018
— Transport Authority (@TransportMV) September 7, 2018
“How to use the Sinamalé Bridge.”
Bismillah. Sinamale Bridge opens today, 7th Sept 2018, for public use; exactly 3 years to the day it's design was officially unveiled. Thank you President Xi Jinping and President Yameen. Hats off to President Yameen for his visionary leadership in transforming the country. pic.twitter.com/kBPsXEXITg
— Dr.Mohamed Muizzu (@MMuizzu) September 7, 2018
Photo from Twitter