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Wando bridge repairs involve 2 new cables

Staff //May 24, 2018//

Wando bridge repairs involve 2 new cables

Staff //May 24, 2018//

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Work continues on the Interstate 526 westbound lanes over the Wando River. (Photo/Rob Thompson/SCDOT)The S.C. Department of Transportation said Wednesday that repairs are ongoing to replace the snapped cable inside the Interstate 526 westbound bridge over the Wando River.

The DOT shut the bridge down unexpectedly on May 14 after inspectors found the broken cable. The bridge is scheduled to reopen on June 11.

Infrastructure experts are working on repairs and investigating what caused the broken cable.

“We’ve got a tremendous number of national and international experts helping us, all designed and intended to provide that level of assurance that the repairs are appropriate, and they are looking to see what additional steps we may take in South Carolina for this structure and others,” Secretary of Transportation Christy Hall said in a statement. “At the end of the day, our goal is to make sure we’re making the proper assurance to the citizens of our state that this bridge is a safe bridge.”

The first strand of 19 cables has been welded, ready to be placed into the bridge. (Photo/Rob Thompson/SCDOT)A new cable is being made by Strand-Tech Manufacturing of Summerville, which will be installed to replace the broken one, said LeLand Colvin, DOT’s deputy secretary for engineering.

An additional cable will be added inside the bridge as well — for a total of nine cables, up from the original eight — to increase safety and reliability. Each of these cables is made of 19, seven-wire strands that are placed in a circular, protective cover and filled in with cement grout.

The two-way traffic flow on the bridge’s eastbound lanes continues. Some drivers have reported increased congestion; DOT officials said traffic conditions are gradually improving following the eastbound two-way traffic flow, which started Monday.

“We are still on schedule for the June 11 reopening,” SCDOT Commission Vice Chairman Robby Robbins said in the release. “They are working as hard as they can every day for you to get this bridge reopened.”