December 9, 2013
Initial dredging work on Bonner Bridge is complete
with the North Carolina Department of Transportation and the Great
Lakes Dredge and Dock Company LLC Dredge Alaska completed dredging
operations Sunday night at the Herbert C. Bonner Bridge on Highway12
over the Oregon Inlet.
“I want to sincerely thank all of the
hardworking NCDOT crews and the dredge crews for pushing through the
harsh elements to try to complete this repair work as soon as
possible,” said Transportation Secretary Tony Tata. “I also want to
thank the residents of the Outer Banks for their patience during this
process, and our outstanding N.C. Ferry employees for all of their
efforts to keep the residents connected.”
Initial scans are promising. However, it will be several days before NCDOT can determine the success of the dredging.
30,000 cubic yards of sand were pumped during the weekend from the main
navigation channel of the Oregon Inlet to the location at Bent 166
underneath the Bonner Bridge where scour, or the erosion of sand from
bridge pilings, caused NCDOT to close the bridge on Tuesday, Dec. 3.
morning, crews with NCDOT’s Location and Survey’s Unit conducted an
underwater sonar survey of the area around Bent 166. Dive crews also
did an initial inspection of the area to assess if the sand is
compacting as it needs to in order to properly support the bridge.
give sand time to settle and compact, NCDOT engineers are currently
planning to perform another dive and sonar survey at Bent 166 on
Wednesday, weather and current permitting.
will then evaluate data gathered at this time to determine the overall
effectiveness of the sand placement and determine the next steps for
In addition to work taking place on the support
structure underneath the bridge, NCDOT is also performing a survey of
the deck in the area of Bent 166 to make sure that there has not been
any movement of the bridge.
awarded a $1.6 million contract to Carolina Bridge Company Inc. of
Orangeburg, S.C. last week for emergency repairs on the Bonner Bridge.
will use sandbags and four-foot tall A-Jacks to provide support to the
bridge pilings and to prevent further scour from occurring. A-Jacks
interlocked together will be placed around the perimeter of the support
structure at Bent 166. Crews will then place sandbags inside the line
of A-Jacks. An additional two layers of A-Jacks and sandbags will then
be placed on top of the base layer for a total of 10-12 feet of
additional protection. This will allow sand to collect over the
sandbags and A-Jacks, providing additional support to the structure.
crews have begun mobilizing equipment and materials to the bridge site.
NCDOT and the contractor are working together to develop a timeframe
for the repairs to be complete.
addition to the emergency repair work, Carolina Bridge Company Inc.
will also begin driving two test piles later this week near the general
vicinity of Bent 166. These test piles will allow NCDOT’s geotechnical
staff to gather data about the load piles can carry and will help in
the analysis of this situation, as well as help with future repairs.
Emergency Ferry Route
Ferry Division activated its emergency route between Stumpy Point and
Rodanthe with limited service the night of the bridge closure. The
route went into full operation Wednesday, Dec. 4, with steady traffic
and short-to-moderate wait times reported at both terminals. Dare
County Emergency Management has issued a priority loading list for the
route. The emergency ferry route will continue seven days a week as
long as service is needed. Ferry information is available on the Ferry
Division website, by calling 800-293-3779, or via Facebook (North
Carolina Ferry System) and Twitter @NCDOT_Ferry).
For More Information
NCDOT will continue to update the public on this situation online and via its N.C. 12 Facebook page and N.C. 12 Twitter account.
NCDOT is working hard to reopen the Bonner Bridge to traffic as quickly
as possible, the emergency repairs are not considered a permanent fix
for the aging bridge. After 50 years of weathering many storms, the
bridge needs to be replaced. In July 2011, NCDOT awarded a $215.8
million contract for the design and construction of a new bridge.
Design work began immediately and construction of the new bridge was
set to begin in early 2013; however, lawsuits have put the project on
Read more about the history of the Bonner Bridge and the challenges to replacing this lifeline.
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