Kittson County Historical Society

Kittson profiles and photos from the past and present

ICE DAMAGE TO THE NEW BRIDGE SUPPORTS

When I crossed the Drayton bridge it was Sunday so no one was working and I was able to drive down to the construction site and examine the progress in detail. It looks like the large steel pilings are almost all in place on the North Dakota side. The bridge has been designed to start farther back from the river on the Drayton side and sit much higher when it crosses the river. This results in a longer and higher bridge.

I noticed that a number of the bridge supports which the bridge will sit on have been constructed. Some have been framed and the cement poured. Some have only the rebar rods in place and have yet to have the forms set up.

As I examined the progress I noticed that one of the bridge support piers was damaged. The wooden form had been smashed in or crushed on the south side about 12 feet above the ground. This is a photo of what I saw.

I soon realized that another bridge support was damaged and it was caused by ice that was lifted by the flood waters from the river and driven into the bridge. It was also obvious that the rebar sections had also suffered damage by the ice and possibly floating trees and logs.

You can see the cracks in this bridge support so it will have to be torn down and replaced. All of the damage will have to be inspected and the cost of repairs and replacement calculated. This will no doubt delay the completion of the bridge.

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