DAVIESS CO., Ky. (WFIE) - Engineers with the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) have concluded that the damage to the Panther Creek Bridge is repairable and can be reopened rather than having to replace it.
The bridge was heavily damaged on May 21 by a truck with a load too high to clear the bridge.
It was initially thought that the damage was too severe, but after further review, engineers were able to identify a repair option that would include raising the bridge by two feet and adding 17 feet of clearance.
KYTC officials say Jim Smith Contracting will be working on the bridge repairs for $241,340.
State transportation crews will begin repairs on the bridge next week.
Detours will be in place and officials advise drivers with large vehicles to avoid using Todd Bridge Road to avoid dangerous turns.
Neighbors tell 14 News that having the road closed impacts farmers tremendously, but they too have their reasons for wanting the bridge to open as soon as possible.
“We’ve got a convenience store and a little hamburger stand up the road, and those are things that are important to me - just out of convenience," neighbor Denny Alford said. "It’s another way into town if we want to go the back roads if there’s ever a problem back this way, so it’s good to have more than one way in and out.”
KYTC officials say the bridge is expected to reopen in late fall.
After the repairs are made, KYTC officials say the bridge is expected to last at least another 10 years.