Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Barge Collides With Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel

A barge collision shut down northbound traffic on the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel on Monday.

About 6:30 p.m. a 140-foot-by-40-foot barge loaded with rocks for an on-going construction project at the bridge came loose from its mooring at the west end and struck the bridge between the two tunnels, said Tom Anderson, deputy director of the facility.

Northbound traffic was halted while the barge was secured and workers could inspect the damage to the bridge. In the meantime, northbound traffic that was stuck at the bridge had to be turned around.

It took about two hours to secure the barge and tow it away. About that time, bridge-tunnel personnel began alternating traffic on the southbound span to help move motorists who were stuck waiting on the northbound side.

The inspection revealed that the bridge sustained only some minor damage. A few pieces of concrete were knocked off a pile of rocks at the bottom of one part of the bridge. Other piles only had scrape marks.
All lanes of traffic reopened before midnight.

The barge was there as part of an on-going project to lay rocks along the bed of the Bay to support the bridge. It was unknown how the barge came loose from its mooring.

Source;    http://hamptonroads.com/node/604454


Shane Ryans said...

That is wild, I am glad no one was hurt and the bridge didn't sustain much damage. Can you imagine what would have happened if the collision was worse.

jmmb said...

Shane- since I am a person that is a little terrified of bridges I don't even want to give that any thought! :) Photos and videos on the local news showed travelers waiting outside their vehicles, some playing catch with thier kids. I don't believe that would have been something for me to witness.

Anonymous said...

I for one, wish they would "keep" this type of news to themselves, because now I will "wonder" everytime I cross it.... And, like the Maryland Chesapeake Bridge span to the North, why they removed the "barriers" and replaced them with "see thru rails" is beyond me...talk about death gripping...I practically need a steering wheel when I get across.

jmmb said...

Anon 10:58 Even though I know it does me no good to know about these things I want to know.

I was among a group of people a few weeks ago and the topic of bridges came up. You would be surprised with the number of people that feel the same way.

My biggest fear? Drivers that aren't paying close attention to where they are!

Doug DiPlacido said...

Back in the late 1960,'s I was in the Navy and one of our ships hit the old bridge when it was only one lane and damaged the structure and part of it collapsed and cut traffic for several months until it was repaired. Luckily noone was driving on that section at the time.