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Three bridges need emergency repairs

NEWFANE—“We’ve been written up by the state,” Road Foreman Todd Lawley said at the Nov. 7 regular Selectboard meeting.

After a routine inspection conducted by the Vermont Agency of Transportation, the agency found three bridges in need of repair. To avoid penalties, the town needs to submit a plan for fixing them.

Two bridges on South Wardsboro Road need their band rails replaced, Lawley said, “because the band rail on one of them is not in good repair, and [on] the other, the band rail is very low to the ground.”

The third bridge cited is on Baker Brook Road, and “it’s a little tiny bridge ... [and] the abutment has gotten undermined from the water,” Lawley said.

Lawley, who also serves as Selectboard chair, said there is money in the budget for all three projects, noting the town has $30,000 for bridge repairs and $8,000 for band rails.

He suggested the Board approve the projects “as emergency work so we can get this off the [AOT’s] hit list,” meaning the repairs wouldn’t have to go through the bidding process.

Lawley contacted Daniels Construction for the abutment project and the Lafayette Company for the bridges needing band rails.

Both submitted quotes, according to Administrative Assistant Shannon Meckle. Daniels’ quote was $5,900, while Lafayette’s wasn't available at press time.

These repairs will likely happen before winter, Lawley said.

“If we don’t do anything ... we’re going to be liable if somebody gets hurt on those bridges,” Lawley said.

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Originally published in The Commons issue #384 (Wednesday, November 23, 2016). This story appeared on page B5.

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