As was stated, Gov. Tim Pawlenty said the bridge was inspected by the Minnesota Department of Transportation in 2005 and 2006 and that no structural problems were noted. "There were some minor things that needed attention," he said .
Although this catastrophe will seriously impact the future of bridge safety across our Nation...What we are talking about here, is a US river system which collects eroded debris from the entire central half of the United States...And what is interesting to note, is the pronounced comparisons of three decades of change (for an example) in the birdsfoot delta of the Mississippi River...
I'll post more observations on this later. Perhaps this will be revealed...
(But then again, perhaps not.) Video (absent audio)
Road crews had been working on the 40-year-old bridge's deck, joints, guardrails and lights this week. "None of it would be related to the structure," said Bob McFarlin, assistant to Minnesota Transportation Commissioner Carol Molnau.
Due to subsidence, erosion, and sea level rise, saltwater intrusion has occurred into areas where freshwater plants had lived. As the freshwater vegetation died, the erosion continued and allowed more saltwater intrusion. This condition has been exacerbated by less fresh water arriving in the delta due to river control and bayou restoration projects directing water to other distributaries. Other marsh reductions have occurred from controlled burns to promote muskrat habitat and nutria grazing, which have caused “eat-outs” where the vegetation has been. -Info: U.S. Department of the Interior | U.S. Geological Survey
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