Carper: More Stringent In Future After I-495 Bridge Closure - 47 ABC - Delmarva's Choice

Carper: More Stringent In Future After I-495 Bridge Closure

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WILMINGTON, Del. - Bridge safety continues to be a hot topic in the First State after the I-495 bridge in Wilmington was shut down on June 2nd after discovering that the columns were tilting.

State officials ordered a review of 29 other major bridges in the First State. According to reports, 14 had dirt, materials or vehicles stored underneath or within 100 feet of them.

But officials don't believe what they found posed any real threat. State leaders reviewed the 495 bridge and though $2 million of emergency federal money has come in, that may not be enough.

"We have a Transportation Trust Fund that's running out of money and we'll be out of money basically in August," said Sen. Tom Carper (D). "A lot of private projects including bridge projects will stop in their tracks and we need to do something about that.

"This bridge covers a big rive and covers a lot of space and it was just structured so that somebody could put dirt there.  They had the extra filter. I expect we're going to be much more stringent in the future, not just in this state but across the country to make sure this kind of thing happens again."

The bridge is expected to stay closed through Labor Day. Engineers determined that a massive dirt mound dumped next to the bridge may have ultimately caused damage to several of its columns.

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