DOTD inspects bridges
PORT ALLEN - The left lane of traffic was closed on the Intracoastal Waterway Bridge Thursday, as the Department of Transportation and Development inspected the bridge.
More than 26,000 people cross the bridge everyday. Every two years, DOTD inspects state bridges, looking for deficiencies. What they find will determine what kind of repairs the bridge needs.
According to a non-profit report called Transportation for America, the bridge is considered structurally deficient. However, officials with DOTD say just because the bridge is considered structurally deficient, doesn't mean it isn't safe. The term is a mechanism to start the planning process to restore the bridge.
Drivers say knowing the bridge is inspected makes them feel safer.
"I just want them to make sure its safe for us to drive across in heavy traffic," said Verbie Sumrall. "I think all the bridges in Louisiana need to be inspected. Theres so much traffic then there was 50 years ago."
According to Transportation for America the expected life span for a bridge is 50 years. The Intracoastal Bridge was built in 1960.
DOTD says there are plans in the works to build a new bridge over the Intracoastal Waterway. That would cost about $25 million.