The recent bus that caught fire in Ċirkewwa set me thinking about a vehicle catching fire in a two-lane tunnel. Fire engines and ambulances would have to make their way between other vehicles. And the resultant smoke would certainly make life impossible, to say the least.

I don’t believe any Maltese government would approve a 13-kilometre-long tunnel without taking into consideration the hazards emanating from a tunnel under the sea. You can, of course, design a tunnel that is fully prepared for any foreseeable eventuality. At a prohibitive price.

However I do not think that everything is lost. The future, it could be 30, 40 or even 50 years, beckons. Just consider. The distance over the water between Malta and Comino is one kilometre. That between Comino and Gozo is even shorter, at about 800 metres. A two-lane road on Comino would make it possible for vehicles to cross over to either island on a single-lane bridge in three minutes at 20km an hour. Even today’s technology makes this possible.

Food for thought.

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