Repairs on track for Eggners Ferry Bridge to reopen
by Memorial Day weekend
May 19, 2012 - Photos and information courtesy Keith
Todd, KYTC District 1 (Photos Below)
AURORA, Ky. Repairs to the U.S. 68/KY 80 Eggners Ferry
Bridge are on track for reopening of the damaged bridge in
time for the Memorial Day weekend.
Crews from Hall Contracting of Kentucky Inc. lifted a new
truss span into place on Tuesday, May 15. Today, they are
placing the last of the reinforcing steel and forms required
for pouring a concrete deck on the new span this weekend.
They plan complete final preparations on Saturday morning to
be prepared to pour concrete starting on Sunday morning.
The concrete pour is expected to take about 5 to 6 hours to
Due to the amount of truck traffic the concrete work will
generate, barricades will be up at each end of the bridge
and access will be restricted. On the Marshall County
side no one will be able to get any closer than barricades
at the US 68/KY 80 intersection. However, the public
will be able to watch the work from Ken Lake State Resort
Park. Restricting access to the bridge to essential
personnel only will allow the concrete trucks plenty of room
to maneuver safely.
The Eggners Ferry Bridge crosses Kentucky Lake between
Marshall and Trigg counties. A 322-foot span of the bridge
was destroyed when struck by an 8200 ton cargo ship on the
night of Jan. 26. The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet
(KYTC) awarded an emergency contract for the repair project
to Hall Contracting. The contract specifies a deadline of
Sunday, May 27, for completion of repairs and reopening the
bridge to traffic.
KYTC District 1 Chief Engineer Jim LeFevre said security
will be stepped up around the bridge this weekend to
maintain safety at the site. While recognizing there
is a lot of public interest in the work, LeFevre asked that
everyone stay off the bridge and its approaches to help
speed the work and avoid creating safety hazards.
Truck access to the bridge and approaches is critical for
this phase of the bridge repair operation, LeFevre said.
Cement trucks will be turning around on the bridge approach
causeway and backing up along the bridge approach as they go
about making deliveries. To assure the safety of both
workers and the public and timely completion of the
required work we are asking area law enforcement agencies
to write trespassing citations to anyone who goes beyond our
Road Closed signs at each end of the bridge work zone.
The amount of concrete required for the new deck also means
there will be a number of trucks traveling along KY 80
between the concrete mixing plant in Murray and the bridge,
LeFevre added. We re urging everyone to use caution
along this route due to the increase in truck traffic.
LeFevre said any number of additional issues could hinder
progress on the bridge, including the weather.
However, he said he is optimistic that traffic can be fully
restored by the Memorial Day deadline.
After the 8,200-ton Delta Mariner knocked out the span,
electrical power to the structure originally fed from
Trigg County on the eastern side had to be temporarily
rerouted to be supplied from Marshall County. A KYTC
electrical crew is continuing work along the bridge to
restore the power supply from the east end.
Once a new deck is poured, KYTC construction inspectors will
check the concrete to ensure it is of proper strength.
In addition, KYTC bridge inspectors will check and document
the new span. KYTC inspectors expect to complete
required safety checks within a few hours.
The bridge serves as the western entrance to The Land
Between The Lakes National Recreation Area. In
addition to providing a key transportation link for area
commuters, the bridge is a connecting point for tourism in
Kentucky s 15-county Western Lakes Region.
According to Kentucky s Western Waterland, a regional
tourism promotion group, tourism dollars provide a direct
annual contribution of $472 million to the region and a
direct contribution of $7.4 billion to the Kentucky economy
Photos Note: The Delta Mariner is shown
traveling under the Eggners Ferry Bridge at the bottom
yesterday. This vessel is the same one that destroyed
the bridge back in January. Photos courtesy Keith