Three generations dedicated to road maintenance in Tibet

By Zhang Liying
0 Comment(s)Print E-mail, March 22, 2019
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Lodro, a road maintenance worker in Qamdo, a city in the eastern part of China's Tibet Autonomous Region, speaks in an interview on March 20. [Photo by Yang Yunpeng/]

"Road maintenance directly concerns traffic safety, so we must be meticulous in our work", said Lodro, a road maintenance worker in Qamdo, a city in the eastern part of China's Tibet Autonomous Region.

Lodro, who turns 50 this year, started his current job in 1985. He is now responsible for 43.025 kilometers of road from Qamdo Bamda Airport to Bamda Transport Station, which is part of the China National Highway 214.

He said that the road, which stands at an altitude of over 4,000 meters, was built by many soldiers, civilians and technicians more than 60 years ago. Due to the high altitude and harsh environment, the builders, he said, endured extremely tough conditions and faced many technical challenges during construction.

As a "second generation" road maintenance worker, Lodro believes that his working conditions have improved significantly compared with that of his parents', especially after the road was paved with asphalt and concrete in 2004.

"When I was a child, my parents often took me to their workplace, which was very rundown. And since the roads were generally in a dreadful state, we had to walk for nearly three hours from our home just to get there," he said in an interview on Wednesday.

"Now we can enjoy a shuttle bus service," Lodro continued. "and our workplace is well-equipped with good facilities, including a canteen, a gym and a reading room."

He said that shovels, pickaxes and handcarts were the only working tools available to them in the past, whereas now workers have patrol vehicles and heavy machinery designed specifically for road maintenance.

"These machines help us remove the road blocks caused by natural disasters such as landslides and blizzards, it helps conserve manpower and greatly increases our work efficiency," Lodro said.

Five years away from retirement, Lodro said he hopes his 25-year-old elder son, who is also working as a road maintenance worker in Ngari prefecture, can do a good job. He hopes that his son will in turn hand over the baton to his children in the future.

"We will continue the spirit demonstrated by our predecessors when building the Sichuan-Tibet and Qinghai-Tibet highways, and contribute more to the development of Tibet's transport networks," he said.

China's National Highway 214 in Qamdo, a city in the eastern part of China's Tibet Autonomous Region on March 20, 2019. [Photo by Yang Yunpeng/]
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