In the Indian city of Kolkata lies a bridge that is in danger, although not from vandals, weather or natural erosion, or even age.
No, the culprit is spit.
The Howrah Bridge is a cantilever suspension bridge that crosses the Hooghly River. Over the years, residents have been purchasing and chewing a mix of betel leaf, areca nut, and slaked lime, then spitting the mixture at the base of the bridge (among other places, I’m sure).
The mixture, known as paan, is a mild stimulant and, if you take a look at the weakened steel hangars of the bridge, pretty darned corrosive.
The hangars, which were once 6 millimeters thick, are now a mere 3 mm, prompting authorities to come up with news ways to prevent any future damage.
One such way is to cover the bridge’s steel with a fiberglass casing.
But given the corrosive spit, as well as past vehicular accidents and corrosive bid droppings, this incredibly busy bridge is in dire need of a makeover before anyone gets seriously injured.