skip to Main Content

Penndot Bridge Safety

Bridge safety continues to be a heightened concern sparked by the devastating bridge collapse in Pittsburgh last week.

PennDOT officials are using that catastrophe as a reminder to highlight the need for infrastructure attention.

(The Fern Hollow Bridge is owned by the City of Pittsburgh, not PennDOT.)

PennDOT officials met virtually Friday afternoon to discuss their responsibilities towards Pennsylvania’s network of state and local bridges.

Acting Executive Deputy Secretary Melissa Batula said PennDOT inspects tens of thousands of bridges across the Commonwealth.

“Generally, bridges are inspected every two years. Some bridges, such as those that have weight restrictions, are inspected once a year, or more frequently if bridges are in poor conditions,”

Pennsylvania is home to over 25,400 state-owned bridges.

“PennDOT conducts around 18,000 bridge inspections every year. To give you a sense, that’s about 70 each workday, which are performed under the direction of trained and qualified inspectors,” Batula said.

She said the public should be assured that PennDOT officials are doing everything they can to make sure Pennsylvania bridges are standing strong.

“In 2008, there were over 6,000 state owned bridges that were in poor condition in Pennsylvania. We have made tremendous progress in reducing that number. So, today, that number is just over 2,400 bridges for the state-owned system.”

Just days before the Fern Hollow Bridge collapse in Pittsburgh, Governor Tom Wolf announced that Pennsylvania is set to receive 1.6 billion dollars in federal funding to fix over 3,000 bridges statewide.

That was made possible by Biden’s infrastructure law.

“Because of the age of our bridge network, and the size of our network, 250 just of our state maintained bridges move into that poor category every year. So, we must preserve, repair, and replace at a greater rate each year to continue our trend of reducing that number of bridges that are in the poor condition,”

Back To Top