No time­line or cost on Pla­cen­tia bridge re­pairs

The Compass - - NEWS - BY JAMES MCLEOD jm­cleod@thetele­gram.com Twit­ter: Tele­gramJames

Life has mostly re­turned to nor­mal in Pla­cen­tia, but more than a week af­ter the town’s lift bridge broke, the govern­ment doesn’t know when it’ll be fixed, or how much it will cost.

Trans­po­ra­tion Min­is­ter Nick McGrath wasn’t avail­able to do an in­ter­view Mon­day, but a spokes­woman said that the bridge is be­ing worked on.

“We are work­ing with a con­trac­tor to se­cure the sup­ply of a new drive shaft cou­pling which caused the fail­ure last week re­sult­ing in the bridge low­er­ing on the north side while the south side re­mained raised dur­ing the com­ple­tion of a lift,” spokes­woman Adri­enne Luther wrote in an email.

“The full cost of re­pairs has not yet been de­ter­mined.”

On Aug. 3, a piece of equip­ment broke while the lift bridge was in the raised po­si­tion, and one side of it slowly dropped, un­til it was hang­ing at an awk­ward an­gle.

On Thurs­day, the bridge was re-opened for ve­hi­cle and pedes­trian traf­fic af­ter work­ers man­aged to sta­bi­lize it in the low­ered po­si­tion.

There’s no sense of how long it’ll be be­fore it gets back to lift­ing.

Sev­eral fish­ing ves­sels were stranded in the port in the bay just above the bridge, but Pla- cen­tia Mayor Wayne Power said that some of them have man­aged to sneak un­der it by re­mov­ing gear from the tops of the boat.

“I know a cou­ple of the larger ves­sels made mod­i­fi­ca­tions to their boats in order to get out,” he said.

The provin­cial govern­ment is spend­ing more than $40 mil­lion to con­struct a new bridge, which is slated to be com­pleted in 2016.

Photo by James McLeod/Transcon­ti­nen­tal Me­dia

The Pla­cen­tia lift bridge was out of com­mis­sion and govern­ment officials were try­ing to get it fixed last Mon­day, af­ter a me­chan­i­cal fail­ure left it hang­ing at an an­gle.

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