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Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Bridge Analysis

MoDOT Completes Preliminary Study of Minneapolis-Type Bridges
156 Deemed Safe So Far, Remaining 76 Will Get Further Study

Preliminary studies of all Missouri bridges with gusset plates similar to the collapsed bridge in Minnesota are complete, with many already confirmed as safe, Missouri Department of Transportation bridge engineers announced.

Engineers are evaluating the state's 232 truss bridges.

Read more....

Missouri took the NTSB’s press release seriously as all jurisdictions were urged to do. Meanwhile, Oberstar tried to make political hay out of Rosenker’s preliminary findings. MoDOT Director Pete Rahn knows, in a real world, he must not ignore NTSB (to his own peril if a bridge collapses), but Oberstar has the luxury of politicizing the real world report.

Even Louisiana is following suit.

William D. Ankner, Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development Secretary designee, said the recent federal report citing the steel plates connecting the beams of a bridge’s frame as the probable cause of the Minneapolis bridge collapse caused Louisiana to check its own bridges more closely.

"After the Aug. 1 Minneapolis bridge collapse, DOTD bridge inspectors reviewed and analyzed the inspections of all truss bridges in Louisiana," Ankner said. "However, in light of the federal government’s findings I have directed DOTD engineers to begin an immediate review of the plate design of all similar bridges in the state.

Isn't it amazing how engineers can read the NTSB report and take prudent action while a politician attacks the reporting NTSB chairman to try and score political points? Motives make all the difference in the world. Engineers try to preserve life and save themselves enormous embarrassment and culpability. Democrat politicians embarrass themselves trying to destroy Republicans who clearly are not at fault while not sensing any guilt whatsoever.

Somewhere in Missouri and Louisiana there certainly must be some Democrats among the engineers who knew they needed to take prudent action. Three cheers for Democrat engineers!

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