ELIZABETHTOWN – The U.S. 701 northbound bridge
in Bladen County will remain closed while the N.C. Department of Transportation
identifies a plan to repair damage to the substructure caused by Hurricane
NCDOT closed the bridge spanning the Cape Fear River on Thursday for an
inspection. Today, the department’s engineers determined soils weakened by
Hurricane Florence have caused an interior bridge pier to shift. As a safety
precaution, the department will keep the bridge closed until engineers develop
a plan for fixing the pier.
general terms, the interior pier forms the substructures and pile foundation
that supports the girders and riding deck.
a plan is developed for the repair, the department can establish a schedule for
reopening the bridge.
In the meantime,
northbound traffic will remain shifted onto the two-lane southbound bridge,
which will operate in a two-way traffic pattern during the closure.