DARE COUNTY, N.C. -- N.C. Department of Transportation Secretary Tony Tata along with other NCDOT and Dare County officials met with media this afternoon to discuss the recent closure of the Herbert C. Bonner Bridge on N.C. 12 over the Oregon Inlet in Dare County.
The department has awarded a $1.6 million contract to Carolina Bridge Company Inc. of Orangeburg, S.C. for emergency repairs on the bridge. NCDOT and the contractor are working together to develop a time frame for the repairs to be complete.
As part of this emergency repair project, crews will use sandbags and four-foot tall A-Jacks to provide support to the bridge pilings. A-jacks locked together will be placed in a perimeter around the support structure of the bridge. Crews will then fill the perimeter with sandbags to provide support to the pilings. An additional two layers of A-jacks and sandbags will then be placed on top of the base layer for a total of 10-12 feet of protection. This will allow sand to collect over the sandbags and A-Jacks, providing additional support to the structure.
Emergency ferry route
NCDOT’s Ferry Division activated its emergency route between Stumpy Point and Rodanthe with limited service on Tuesday after the bridge closure. The route went into full operation today, with steady traffic and short-to-moderate wait times reported at both terminals. Dare County Emergency Management has issued a priority loading list for the route. Ferry information is available on the Ferry Division website, by calling 800-293-3779, or via Facebook (North Carolina Ferry System) and Twitter @NCDOT_Ferry).
NCDOT closed the Bonner Bridge the afternoon of Tuesday, Dec. 3. Routine sonar scanning of the bridge had identified scouring concerns, or areas where too much sand has eroded from the support structure of the bridge. As NCDOT crews continued to monitor these conditions, inspections revealed that scour was occurring more rapidly than it had been previously, which led department officials to decide to close the bridge immediately for the safety of all residents and visitors of the area.