The historic span was damaged after being hit by a box truck.
Frederick, Md. (KM) Work is expected to begin next month on repairs to the Roddy Road Covered Bridge near Thurmont. The historic span was damaged in June when a box truck hit the south end. It has been closed since then.
“All the crossbeams were severed. So all those will be replaced. And any other members of the structure that were damaged are going to be replaced in kind,” says Amanda Radcliffe with the Frederick County Office of Transportation Engineering.
The contract to repair the bridge was awarded to Fitzgerald Heavy Timber Construction, Inc. Radcliffe says crews will be replacing the damaged wooden sections with new parts. “We’ll be bringing in wood to repair those members,” she says. “It will be in kind, same type of wood, same sized dimensions and everything. Just for the structural integrity, we’ll be replacing them.”
And the bridge will be lifted from its current location spanning Owens Creek. “It will be lifted with a crane and placed on the road on the north side of the bridge. Work will be done because it will be easier to do that instead over top of the stream. And then once it’s complete, we’ll reset the bridge,” says Radcliffe.
She also says the work is expected to be completed within a four-month period. “Some of the aspects may not be completed based on temperature, such as painting,” Radcliffe says. “Most everything at least would be completed and then we hope it the end of January, if all goes well.”
The county is also looking at ways to protect this historic structure. “We’re actually looking at potentially installing an overhead warning system. We’re going to have a public meeting on it on September 29th at 7:00 PM at the Thurmont Library in the Community Room just to seek community input,” says Radcliffe.
She also says the county is considering the placement of a monitoring device at the bridge’s location, possibly a camera.
By Kevin McManus