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Supervisors hear of deteriorating bridges

This rotting wood piling from the bridge on 260th Street in Corinth Township, is one of the reasons the bridge was closed last fall. It is one of several deteriorating wood support and steel bridge structures in the county, County Engineer Paul Jacobson said. Photo courtesy Humboldt County Engineer’s Office.

Humboldt County faces some serious decisions regarding bridges on secondary roads in the county.
On Monday, County Engineer Paul Jacobson and his staff attempted to get ahead of the curve in addressing questions and concerns about the conditions and viability of the structures with the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors during their regular weekly meeting.
While Humboldt County has 83 bridges, compared to well over 100 only a few years ago, many of those remaining (33) are load rated and in deteriorating condition, Jacobson reported.
Jacobson presented the board with a list of the 33 load-rated bridge structures in the county. They range in weight limits from three tons to 48 tons.
In considering whether to replace bridges, the supervisors need to look at affected vehicle miles by closing a bridge, as well as priority routes of travel.
Jacobson said in next year’s budget, there is only $185,000 for repair/replacement of local structures (roads and bridges) and about $100,000 in equipment replacement.
“That $275,000-$300,000 is about what we have in the budget and have had for serveral years,” Jacobson said.
“The costs of repair and replacement are definitely rising faster than our pot of money,” Supervisor Jerry Haverly said.
For more information on the Humboldt County Supevisors, read this week's Humboldt Independent.