China’s COSCO Shipping Holdings suspended construction on a tunnel for a major port project in northern Peru after a partial landslide struck, a company official said on Tuesday.
The company is working to understand what caused the landslide, said Romulo Zarauz, a manager with the Chinese company’s local unit.
The incident took place Tuesday morning in the coastal province of Huaral, about 56 miles (90 km) north of the capital Lima, damaging at least four houses near the tunnel, he said.
As part of the major infrastructure project, COSCO is building a 1.1 mile (1.8 km) tunnel designed to cross under a residential neighborhood and connect a highway with the port. The $1.3 billion project’s first stage is set to be completed by the end of next year.
The Chancay port is envisioned as a hub for Peru’s Pacific coast that can facilitate more trade with Asia.
The land where the tunnel is being built is made of a “non-uniform material of sand and solid rock,” said Zarauz.
(Reuters - Reporting by Marco Aquino; Writing by Valentine Hilaire; Editing by Sonali Paul)