Obituary 11 Jul 2019

Vladimir Ratkowsky 1930 -2019

After a long career as advisor and technical consultant for project owners, contractors and government bodies and a long association with the ITA, International Tunnelling and Underground Space Association, Vladimir Ratkowsky of Slovakia, died after a long standing illness, aged 89 on 30 June 2019.

Vladimir Ratkovsky
Vladimir Ratkovsky

Vladimir, known as Vlado to friends and colleagues, was closely connected with the ITA and contributed significantly to membership of Czechoslovakia as a Member Nation in the ITA since early establishment of the international association in 1974. This effort and dedication laid the foundation stones for the membership of the later Czech Republic and Slovakia in the ITA together with encouragement to other Eastern European nations to become Member Nations of the Association.

As the representative to the ITA for Czechoslovakia he was for many years a lecturing member and presenter at the annual ITA congresses and was part of the organising committee that hosted the ITA Congress and General Assembly of Member Nations in Prague in 1986 and again to Pragues in the Czech Republic in 2007. For a time, he also worked in the UK in the Tunnels Division of the then TRRL, Transport and Road Research Laboratory.

Vlado graduated from the faculty of Civil Engineering at the Slovakian Technical University in Bratislava, majoring in traffic structures. In Slovakia, he was one of the leading scientists and consultants in the field of underground construction and specialized in both municipal road construction and long-distance rail and road connections in his country.

After qualifying as an Assistant Professor in 1979 he used his excellent knowledge of tunnel construction, both mined and cut-and-cover techniques, for not only scientific research and consulting activities, but also for the training of young engineers.

He was best known for his work in the preparation phase of the Bratislava Metro and the construction of various shield-driven public utility lines and road tunnels. He strongly influenced development and progress in the field of underground construction in Slovakia.

“Vladimir will be missed by all associated with the Slovakia Tunnelling Association, as well as the tunnelling public, as a long-time educator who has trained several generations of tunnelling experts involved in the current construction of tunnels in Slovakia and abroad,” said Miloslav Frankovsky, current Chairman of the STA. “He was a fine person and a kind friend to all of us.”


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