Hall Contracting successfully moved a replacement span for the US 68/KY 80 Eggners Ferry Bridge from an assembly area onto a barge today. The 4-hour transfer of the 300 ton steel truss was the first step toward getting the new span moved to the bridge.
Efforts now turn to building a ramp that will allow the cranes to be moved onto a barge so they can be transported with the truss to the bridge site. Hall Engineers indicate moving the cranes from land to barge may actually be more difficult than moving the replacement span from land to barge.
With the amount of work required to load the cranes, engineers are now saying it may be Saturday or Sunday before they can have the replacement span and the equipment required to lift it ready for the 30-mile trip by water to the bridge.
Once the steel truss arrives at the bridge, weather conditions will dictate how quickly it can be lifted into place on the awaiting piers. After it is positioned, workers will immediately start placing forms and reinforcing steel required to pour a new concrete deck on the new section, a process that could take 10 days to two weeks to complete. Concrete on the new deck will then need several days to cure before traffic can be fully restored at the crossing.
The US 68/KY 80 Eggners Ferry Bridge has been closed since January 26th when the 8200 ton cargo ship Delta Mariner slammed into the bridge and knocked a single 322 ft. span into Kentucky Lake.
Hall Contracting has a $7 million contract to replace the missing span with a requirement that the bridge be reopened to traffic by Memorial Day weekend.