Analysis finds 9 percent of Virginia bridges need repair

Analysis finds 1,186 bridges in the commonwealth are structurally deficient.

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Roughly 9 percent of the bridges in Virginia are structurally deficient, according to a recent analysis.

An analysis of the U.S. Department of Transportation’s 2013 National Bridge Inventory database by the American Road & Transportation Builders Association found that 1,186 bridges in the commonwealth were structurally deficient and in need of repair.

Bridges are regularly inspected by state transportation departments for deterioration and are rated on a 9-point scale, with 9 being “excellent.” Bridges are classified as structurally deficient if they receive an overall rating of 4 or lower.

The road builders association notes that these bridges are not necessarily imminently unsafe, but it says signs should be posted notifying the public of their need for repair.

Virginia ranked 21st in the country in terms of number of structurally deficient bridges and 32nd in terms of the percentage these bridges represent compared with the total number of bridges in the commonwealth.

Among neighboring states, the number of deficient bridges ranged from 333 in Maryland to 2,308 in North Carolina. Thirteen percent of the Tar Heel state’s bridges were found to be structurally deficient.

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