Part Of US 169 Bridge Collapses In Iowa

FORT DODGE, Iowa (AP) — Part of a bridge in Fort Dodge collapsed as it was being demolished Monday, sending two workers who had been standing atop the structure tumbling to the ground but leaving them with only minor injuries, officials said.

The workers were on the deck of the U.S. Highway 169 bridge when it fell from beneath them about 8:30 a.m., Fire Chief David Luers said. The men fell about 20 feet.

The workers are employees of Minnowa Construction Inc., of Harmony, Minn., and Project Manager Ben Thorson said they suffered only minor injuries. One suffered a cut on his forehead. The other injured his wrist.

Thorson did not identify the workers but said they were taken to a hospital where they were being treated.

He said the bridge was being removed as part of a bridge replacement project.

“The end span, the beam buckled but we don’t have all the details yet,” Thorson said. “We don’t know what happened. We do this all the time.”

One worker had just climbed out of an excavator and was talking about the day’s plans with another worker when the collapse occurred, Thorson said.

A third employee was at the construction site but wasn’t injured.

Norm McDonald, director of bridges and structures for the Iowa Department of Transportation, said the span that collapsed was 66 feet long.

“Something happened and one of the beams must have given way,” McDonald said.

The center portion of the bridge, which crossed what local residents call 2nd Ave, had already been removed and traffic was passing by on the street when the collapse on the span on the south end of the bridge occurred. The street was closed while crews worked to clean up debris and officials investigated the collapse. It reopened later in the day.

“Without the deck, those piers can tip and lean a little,” McDonald said. “We want to make sure those piers are OK and that things are stable before we open the street.”

A photo of the collapse provided by the fire department showed the excavator resting at about the point where bridge beam broke.

“We’ll be looking at the load of the excavator and where it was located,” McDonald said. “We’re not sure if it had anything to do with it.”

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Comments

One Comment

  1. Cindy says:

    Lets use the entire sentence please on the front page “while being demolished”. Ugh, wcco shame on you!

  2. again says:

    This is news? A bridge being torn down collapsed. It was going down anyway was it not? This is sad, WCCO cant find real news that they need to just report anything. Whats tomorrow a squirrel with a nut in its mouth was run over by a car? Come on guys

    1. Sandy says:

      If it’s a cute squirrel with makeup on then it’s REAL news😉

  3. Right says:

    You got me. You’re like a crack pipe, I can’t resist just a little of the story only to find out I should have known better.

  4. HooDatIS? says:

    NOTHING TO WORRY ABOUT JUST A LITTLE ACCIDENT
    POOKIE AND RAY RAY STOLE SOME COPPER OFF THE BRIDGE AND MADE IT COLLASPE
    GO HOME SMOKE SOME METH AND WE WILL
    HAVE THIS TAKEN CARE OF
    VISIT MY BLOG
    http://ethicalfutures.wordpress.com/2011/04/04/the-importance-of-courage/

  5. john says:

    wow nothing like a little overhyped headline huh. maybe next time give us the full headline. this story is just a waste of time.

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