Dismantling of Old Indian River Inlet Bridge Underway

Apr 4, 2013

New Indian River Inlet Bridge
Credit deldot

BETHANY BEACH, Del. (AP) - Engineers are removing 400-ton sections of the old Indian River Inlet Bridge in Delaware.

The Wilmington News Journal reports removing the old bridge has proving to be a feat of engineering as much as building the new $150 million bridge nearby.

State officials ruled out conventional demolition techniques, such as taking the bridge apart in pieces using barges. They didn't want to disrupt the year-round boat traffic in the inlet. Lifting sections off with a crane wasn't possible, and using a helicopter proved too costly.

So officials turned to an unusual method to dismantle the bridge. They decided to pull the massive bridge spans onto the land. It took two bulldozers and two front-end loaders to pull a massive piece Wednesday. Each of the four sections is 450 feet long.