This year’s AAA Carolinas substandard bridges report shows four Triad area bridges atop the list. Substandard bridges are either in poor physical condition or not built to handle today’s traffic volume.
For the third year in a row, a bridge along Interstate 40 where it splits with Business 85 over South Buffalo Creek is the most concerning according to the report.
Right behind it is a bridge on a stretch of Business 40 through Winston-Salem that crosses Liberty Street.
The silver lining with those bridges is that there is a plan now in place to replace those bridges in 2019 and 2017 respectively.
“There has been some incremental improvement every year and we are pleased to see it,” said Neil Doroshenko, a branch manager with AAA Carolinas.
But coming in third and fourth on the list are two area bridges with no repair plans set.
AAA Carolinas identified a bridge on Westover Avenue between Church Street and Yanceyville Road as one in need of immediate repair.
A bridge that carries Highway 52 traffic over Martin Luther King Jr. Drive in Winston-Salem completes the top four.
“These bridges are on average more than 50 years old and with the amount of traffic that these bridges see on a daily basis it just makes sense that they’re going to wear down and we just need to pay attention to that,” said Doroshenko.
The North Carolina Department of Transportation estimates there are 5,100 substandard bridges across the state but add that it doesn’t mean they’re on the verge of falling.
NCDOT said 68 percent of bridges across the state rate good or better. The state also said if their engineers find a bridge an imminent danger they’d shut it down.