The Richmond area has a major bridge by the same company that designed the Florida structure that collapsed.
The Richmond area has a major bridge by the same company that designed the under-construction Florida structure that collapsed Thursday, killing at least six people.
Tallahassee-based Figg Bridge Engineers designed the Varina-Enon Bridge, which has carried Interstate 295 across the James River east of Richmond since 1990. The $34.4 million structure was the second bridge the company designed using distinctive center-cable supports. The first was Bob Graham Sunshine Skyway Bridge, a more than 4-mile crossing of Tampa Bay in Florida.
The bridge that collapsed Thursday was near Florida International University in Miami. It connected the school with the Sweetwater community across a busy highway, Tamiami Trail. As of Friday, at least 10 people had been taken to hospitals, and rescue workers still were combing through the wreckage for survivors and victims.
In 2012 a Figg bridge under construction between Chesapeake and Portsmouth collapsed into the Elizabeth River, injuring four. State officials fined the company $28,000 for the collapse.
The company website says that the Varina-Enon span was its first to use large precast concrete sections, moved into place complete, supported by wire cables. The bridge survived a direct hit from a tornado in 1992. The twister later did significant damage in Petersburg.