Officials with the Transportation Cabinet are now afraid the cargo vessel that struck the Eggner’s Ferry Bridge may have dislodged a pier holding the structure up.
A news release says divers were to place sensors on a pier of the bridge to determine how badly it was damaged and to determine if it is still moving.
Transportation Cabinet Secretary Mike Hancock says he has to know for certain if the pier shifted and if so, if it is still shifting. He says that will have a major impact on how the cabinet goes forward when deciding how best to resume traffic flow in some manner, if possible.
Officials said at a Friday news conference that it wasn’t likely a “patch job” could be done to the bridge because the missing section is 322 feet long—far longer than any bridge insert that could be brought in.
A ferry has also been suggested, but that would only transport an estimated 500 cars per 24 hours, while over 2,600 traveled the bridge on an average day.
The project is in the state’s road plan and is funded from next year through 2015, though the state has committed to speeding up the process as much as possible.