TROY (KMOV.com) – The Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) said it is concerned about the safety of bridges in Lincoln County during flooding.
Up to 8 inches of rain fell in Lincoln County Thursday, leading to flash flooding and causing the Cuivre River to jump its banks. Bridges carrying traffic on Highway 61 over the river near Troy carry more than 16,000 vehicles per day.
“They’re not just wide enough or tall enough to take all the flooding, the water we’ve been seeing,” said Erik Maninga with MoDOT. “Our concern is if the water gets to the bottom of those girders and you have those lateral forces pushing on that bridge, it could cause a failure.”
The river was projected to crest at 28 feet, which would have meant the water would be pushing against the girders, along with sticks, branches, tree trunks, and other debris collected by the river.
“It could cause a failure with the bridge, and we’re looking at the southbound traffic here and if something were to happen with this bridge it would impact the bridge with traffic going northbound and for that reason we would close down both bridges,” Maninga said.
MoDOT said the fast moving waters have also caused erosion around the base of the pier that hold the bridge up. Some roadways were covered by flood waters in Lincoln County Thursday, leading to closures. The bridges over the Cuivre River were not closed because the river did not crest at the expected height.
MoDOT said it has looked into the possibility of replacing the two bridges, but said it would cost between $10 million and $14 million. The agency said it does not enough room in the budget.