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The 'scariest' bridge in America - could disaster strike again? - Beritaja

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The images of The Francis Scott Key Bridge collapsing were bonzer and chilling. 

A calamity has now go an economical and logistical nightmare for The region.

But was it a freak one-off? Well, worryingly, possibly not.

The Chesapeake Bay Bridge is really comprised of 2 abstracted bridges

Image: Chesapeake Bay Bridge is made of 2 abstracted bridges built astir 20 years apart

Just 20 miles downstream from The Key Bridge, and connected The aforesaid shipping lane, is different that's bigger, longer, older and busier. And it's earned The tag - The scariest in America.

The Chesapeake Bay Bridge is really two. One bridge, for 2 lanes of traffic, was built in 1952. A second, pinch 3 lanes, was added in 1973.

Local fisherman Brian Hardman took  retired into The bay to spot The bridges up close

Image: Local fisherman Brian Hardman took retired into The bay to spot The bridges up close

A hodge-podge of different bridges

took to Chesapeake Bay pinch section fisherman Brian Hardman.

We passed The backed up cargo ships, blocked from entering Baltimore Port because of The downed Key Bridge up stream.

We paused measurement beneath The immense Chesapeake Bay Bridge analyzable for a person look astatine this ageing feat of engineering.

Up adjacent to The 1 of The 4 pylons which supports The suspended portion of The 4 mile-long bridges, you do not request to beryllium an master to spot The deficiency of protection.

A sitting duck

A mini woody buffer, surgery in places, clads ageing actual from which corroding metallic activity supports The roadworthy precocious above.

If a vessel was to deed 1 of these pylons, The effect constituent would beryllium precocious up, fixed The tallness of modern cargo vessels.

Image: The span is protected by woody guards in places

The dual bridges are utilized by 27 cardinal vehicles a year. Eleven cardinal tonnes of cargo walk nether them. And yet it is classed by national authorities arsenic fracture critical.

"The bridge, erstwhile I look astatine it, it's for illustration a sitting duck conscionable astatine The mercy of The ships." structural technologist Professor Abe Aghayere told me.

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His position is shared by peers and he outlines what "fracture critical" means.

"If 1 portion goes, a full conception of The bridge, aliases The full span entirely, could spell conscionable for illustration The Key Bridge did," The professor said.

"The piers aliases The pylons of that of The Bay Bridge are unprotected conscionable for illustration The Key Bridge was. So that worries me. For a span that agelong pinch that overmuch traffic, it needs to beryllium protected."

Eleven cardinal tonnes of cargo walk nether The span each year

Image: Eleven cardinal tonnes of cargo walk nether The span each year

.

Image: A structural technologist warned The span was a 'sitting duck'

It's everybody's concern

At his agency nearby, we meet commissioner Jim Moran. He is simply a section leader who campaigns for backing to hole The span and build a 3rd 1 to easiness congestion. He is ever wondering "what if?".

"The Bay Bridge, arsenic immoderate group cognize - it's been classed arsenic 1 of The scariest bridges."

I propose to him that it doesn't look to beryllium in awesome shape.

.

Image: The Francis Scott Key Bridge collapsed upstream of The Chesapeake Bay Bridge

"Right," he says.

"And The authorities is spending a awesome woody of money to enactment up of it. I mean, that vessel that deed The Key Bridge was astir apt 100,000 tons. And I don't cognize thing that could withstand being hit. So that force, that energy, you know, it's thing everybody's looking into. It's everybody's concern."

As President Biden surveyed The harm astatine The Key Bridge, his words were a reminder that it's an predetermination year.

"Your federation has your back," The president said.

"The national authorities will salary for The full costs of reconstructing that bridge, and I expect The Congress to support my effort."

The disaster in Baltimore is simply a immense setback for The metropolis and The region but could it correspond an opportunity for President Biden and The Democratic Party?

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Bridge collapse: What happened?

Commissioner Moran is simply a Republican. I asked if he thought whether The president had handled The situation well.

"Yes, I do. He came retired correct retired of The gross saying 'the national authorities is going to beryllium present and we're going to enactment here'. And they're helping mostly pinch money. We admit him coming retired and stepping up to The sheet and helping america pinch this."

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has asked The Maryland Transportation Authority to remark connected The authorities of The structure. We are awaiting their response.

The disaster conscionable up watercourse from present past period puts a captious frightening attraction connected infrastructure crossed this country.

Editor: Naga



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