Safety Concerns Delay Progress on Route 1A Bridge in Newbury, Massachusetts

Two steel-and-concrete beams intended as part of the Route 1A bridge reconstruction failed a Massachusetts state safety inspection last week, resulting in a delay in installation.

One of the 120-foot-long beams was damaged during an accident and another sustained damage during loading. Both beams will need to be remanufactured, which Adam Hurtubise of MassHighway said will set back their installation about three weeks.

However, MassHighway says that with time built into the schedule for contingencies, the completion date should remain the same. They estimate that the bridge may reopen as soon as the spring of 2009. S & R Corp., of Lowell, is the general contractor on the project and has been working on an accelerated timetable.

Since September 27, the Route 1A bridge has been closed for what highway official estimated would be a two-year reconstruction project. The original plan was to keep one of the two lanes open to traffic, but severe deterioration of the bridge forced officials to reduce traffic to one lane in the center of the bridge.

Shutting down the bridge completely has negatively impacted businesses in both Rowley and Newbury, since these companies rely on Route 1A traffic to bring in business.

Giant beams damaged at Route 1A bridge, Newburyport News, August 26, 2008
Unsafe conditions on highway constructions projects or other work sites can result in serious injuries. If you or a family member has sustained an injury on the job, then contact our Boston workers’ compensation lawyers to discuss your case during a free consultation.

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