2009. The economic impact of current Investment Trends in surface Transportation Infrastructure. American Society of Civil Engineers.
Highways, bridges, railroads, and transit systems are vital to America’s economic system. But the nation’s surface transportation infrastructure has been deteriorating for many years now, costing citizens and businesses
nearly $130 billion dollars in 2010. “Households will be forced to forgo discretionary purchases such as vacations, cultural events, educational opportunities, and restaurant meals, reduce health related purchases along…in order to pay transportation costs that could be avoided if infrastructure were built to sufficient levels,” the report says.
Dr. Denny. 15 Jul 2010. Drive with care over those 151,394 obsolete, unsafe bridges. Scholars & Rogues.
Each day that I drive the 11 miles from my house to the university, I cross nine of America’s 601,396 bridges (as of 2008). Those nine are not likely to collapse. I have seen each replaced or rehabilitated in the last 10 years. But you may not be as fortunate. You may need to drive across one or more of the 151,394 bridges the federal Department of Transportation lists as structurally deficient or functionally obsolete. That’s 25 percent of American bridges. But fear not: Bridges are becoming safer. There were 3,930 fewer such bridges in the United States in 2008 than in 2007.
Whew. That’s a relief. At this rate, America will have no unsafe or obsolete bridges in only 153 years.
Grade: C. 2009 Report Card for Bridges. American Society of Civil Engineers.
Bridges are built to last 50 years, the average bridge in the USA is 45 years old. Bad bridges that aren’t closed usually have to restrict the weight of vehicles and how much traffic can be on the bridge, leading to traffic jams and wasted fuel as trucks, emergency vehicles, and school buses have to take lengthy detours. “Of the more than 3 trillion vehicle miles of travel over bridges each year, 223 billion miles come from trucks”.
Broken Bridges Near You
The Fix We’re In For: The State of Our Bridges. Transportation for America.