Rockville, IN, June 28, 2011 - Just thought I would pass along a little information.
The Jackson Bridge suffered some damage last night as a semi 23 ton attempted to cross the Jackson Bridge. 7 of the 10 vertical cross beams were busted. Bridge Inspectors were on the scene early today to access the damage if any. As of right now the bridge is closed until further notice.
Parke County along with grants had the bridge reinforced about 3 years ago at a cost of 2 million dollars. It is 207 feet long and the longest single span covered bridge still in use today in the United States.
The truck actually was totally on the bridge when on the 7th cross the truck air foil became stuck in the beams. County highway had to cut the beams to free the truck. At the same time one of the timbers fell between the truck and trailer cutting an air line making problems for moving the truck.
When asked why he crossed the bridge, noticing 3 signs saying 13 ton limit, he said he did not know. When asked why he continued through the bridge when he heard and saw timber coming down--- he replied--well I had to get out of the bridge. Why did you not back up into a drive prior to the bridge opening. He said there was a cable across the drive. County commissioner said to him So you would rather tear up a 2 million dollar bridge than a $100 cable. Driver had no reply.
He ended up on the Bdale Road at the bridge because he could not make a left turn onto Bdale Road at Annapolis. He said he could only turn right. He went the wrong way.
The only good thing I can say is the Jackson Bridge with a 13 ton load limit is still standing. True test of the weight a bridge can handle as the 23 ton semi was on the bridge for approximately 3 to 4 hours. They were built tough and they stand tough.
Cathy C Harkrider,
PCI Executive Secretary,
P.O. Box 165,>br>Rockville, In 47872,
Covered Bridge Festival, October 14-23, 2011
[This article shared by James Crouse - Ed.]