(WBRZ News 2) The Sunshine Bridge is closed indefinitely following an early morning incident.
Officials say a barge carrying a crane going down the Mississippi River collided with the bridge around 3 a.m. One of the main load-carrying support beams of the bridge sustained severe damage. The crane was removed around 7 a.m. The bridge will remain closed until the necessary repairs are made and DOTD determines that the bridge is safe.
DOTD has identified a contractor to make the repairs once it is determined what those repairs will be, officials said.
“We know the closure of the Sunshine Bridge is an inconvenience for many travelers, and we will expedite the emergency repairs,” said DOTD Secretary Shawn D. Wilson, Ph.D. “That being said, safety is our number one concern and we have to ensure the bridge can safely handle traffic before it’s reopened.”
Not a bright day on the Sunshine Bridge. It’s closed until further notice. It was hit last night. pic.twitter.com/dATZtNWxD0— Shawn Wilson, Ph.D. (@onevisionary) October 12, 2018
Donaldsonville area schools will start an hour late due to the bridge closure. According to the Ascension Parish Public Schools system Ascension Head Start, Donaldsonville Primary, Lowery Elementary, Lowery Middle and Donaldsonville High schools will have a one-hour start delay.
This is to allow for extra time for staff and bus drivers to travel to the schools.
LA 70 westbound traffic may detour by heading east on LA 3125, south on LA 3213 and crossing the Veteran’s Memorial Bridge, and west on LA 3127 to the junction of LA 70. LA 70 eastbound traffic may detour by heading east on LA 3127, north on LA 3213 and crossing the Veteran’s Memorial Bridge, and west on LA 3125 to the junction of LA 70.