/Gov Bryant Bridge inspections may take 30 days

Gov Bryant Bridge inspections may take 30 days

This week, the transportation department stated that it will begin to address bridge problems on Thursday. It will notify counties and give them the chance to close bridges. Bryant spoke with reporters after addressing the annual meeting Mississippi Economic Council. Bryant stated that many counties have been informed for weeks, if not months about closing bridges. Bryant stated that it was not surprising for any counties. They know which ones must be closed. Bryant declared a state of emergency on Tuesday ordering the transportation department close to 83 bridges in localities and counties that were found to be inadequate by the federal National Bridge Inspection Standards or the Mississippi Office of State Aid Road Construction. The proclamation allows for any bridges that are found to be defective after its issue to be included. In November 2016, the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration asked that MDOT examine more than 1,542 bridges in the National Bridge Inventory. The review found that 378 bridges in the area should be closed to traffic. MDOT and Mississippi Office of State Aid Road Construction developed a plan in 2017 to bring down the worst timber-pile bridges. This included closing any bridges that pose a threat to motorists. Wednesday’s statement by Melinda McGrath, MDOT Executive Director, was released. Bryant was notified last month by highway administration that not all of the most dangerous bridges were closed. Federal authorities warned Mississippi that Mississippi could lose access to federal funds if dangerous bridges are not closed immediately. MDOT was directed to close 102 local unsafe bridges by Wednesday.