We hear everyday about our crumbling infrastructure. Bridges in a state of disrepair and falling apart and the danger to the public. The article by Conor Ferfuson from NBC news below stresses the urgency of change.
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We hear everyday about our crumbling infrastructure. Bridges in a state of disrepair
and falling apart and the danger to the public. The article by Conor Ferfuson from
NBC news below stresses the urgency of change.
More than 50,000 bridges across the U.S. are falling apart and endangering drivers,
according to a new report.
NBC News found cases from Florida, Georgia, Michigan and other states where
pieces of crumbling bridges broke off and fell to the roadway, sometimes hitting
In Utah, driver Mike Peterson escaped serious injury when a chunk of a bridge
smashed through his windshield as he drove underneath.
“Another six to eight inches, you might not be talking to me today,” said Peterson.
Using government data, the American Road & Transportation Builders Association
compiled a report showing that 54,259 American bridges are “structurally
So many bridges are in need of repair, says the report, that if placed end-to-end
they’d stretch nearly from New York City to Miami. And experts say that at the
current rate of repair or replacement it would take 37 years to fix all the bridges.
Almost every article written about the infrastructure stresses the importance of
providing more money for the infrastructure and fixing the nations bridges
specifically. I would like to see more news on the amount of money currently spent
on the infrastructure and how it is being spent. Is it possible that it should not just
be about throwing more money at the problem?
I do agree that more money is needed in transportation infrastructure to build new
bridges, rail lines, enhance communications, build deeper ports but I also feel that
we need to do more to analyze how current budgets are being spent. Are funds
being utilized properly? Are the best technologies being utilized in construction
materials and inspection services to stretch every dollar, manage maintenance and
repairs while being sure that the top priority of keeping the public safe is always the
Working for a robotic engineering and bridge inspection company, I see and hear
about new technology developments everyday. Materials that can coat the
highways to prevent deterioration, nano technology that can repair itself in asphalt
so roads do not crack or deteriorate for a hundred years.
When it comes to inspection services I can can tell you from experience that the
inspection methods are antiquated, manual in nature and do not supply sufficient
information in order for the department of transportation to best budget and
schedule for maintenance and repairs.
How do you fix or maintain something without having the best information possible
and why would you want to?
With today’s modern technology and robotics infrastructure inspections can be less
expensive, road closures held to a minimum and quantitative data provided to asset
owners so they can make the best budgetary decisions possible. It doesn’t matter
how much money the federal government throws at the infrastructure there is still
not enough money to replace all of our defective bridges.
See the link to an article in NDT.org magazine about some of these new bridge
inspection methods. https://www.ndt.org/news.asp?ObjectID=62346
Infrastructure Preservation Corporation is a nondestructive testing and bridge
inspection company that has developed robotic infrastructure inspection services to
replace 50 year old manual inspection methods within current maintenance
budgets. To find out more go to www.infrastructurepc.com.