Update: West Congress Street Bridge Reopens with Vehicle Weight and Speed Limit Restrictions
The bridge on West Congress Street between Bertrand Drive and Foreman Drive is now open, albeit with restrictions, following its temporary closure due to a fire last Friday night. An inspection conducted by Lafayette engineering firm Huval and Associates concluded that the bridge is safe for certain types of vehicular traffic, but requires weight limitations to be imposed for larger vehicles.
According to the updated guidelines, cars, pickup trucks, and school buses are permitted to use the bridge. However, larger vehicles, particularly those weighing between 15 to 25 tons, will be restricted from crossing. Message boards have been placed at Bertrand Drive and Foreman Drive to direct drivers of these heavier vehicles to use alternate routes.
In addition to the weight restrictions, a speed limit of 25 MPH has been imposed on all four lanes of the bridge. Motorists are advised to adhere strictly to the speed limits and be cautious when crossing, as repair work is still pending.
The original fire under the bridge was caused by a homeless man, according to the Lafayette Fire Department. The fire led to the initial partial closure and also drew attention to the issue of homelessness in the city, raising questions about resources and safety for Lafayette’s homeless population.
Local authorities are urging residents and commuters to be aware of the revised bridge conditions and to plan their routes accordingly, especially if they drive larger vehicles. The restrictions are expected to be in place until further evaluations and repairs can be conducted.
This story will be updated as more information is made available.
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