Joe Vagi 804-371-8304
Aug. 23, 2011
VDOT CONDUCTING BRIDGE AND TUNNEL INSPECTIONS IN RESPONSE TO TODAY’S EARTHQUAKE
No major impact reported on traffic; some minor damage to VDOT facilities
RICHMOND— The Virginia Department of Transportation today dispatched inspection teams to bridges and tunnels across the state soon after the 5.9 magnitude earthquake to assess any potential damage. Currently, no damage has been confirmed to bridges, tunnels or roads. Inspections are expected to continue for 24 hours.
All four tunnels in the Hampton Roads area (Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel, Monitor-Merrimac Memorial Bridge-Tunnel, Downtown Tunnel and Midtown Tunnel), as well as Virginia’s two mountain tunnels on Interstate 77 also have been inspected with no sign of damage.
VDOT’s Culpeper and Fredericksburg Districts did report some minor damage to buildings.
VDOT’s bridges are designed in accordance with American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials’ (AASHTO) standards, including earthquake loads for this region of the country. The agency conducts between 11,000 and 12,000 bridge inspection each year. VDOT has more than 100 staff dedicated to bridge inspections.
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