Norwegian highway authorities have ordered the closure of 14 bridges, including five in the township of Eidsvoll alone, after one of similar construction collapsed this week. They won’t reopen until the reason for the collapse is established.
“We’re sorry about this,” said state highway director Ingrid Dahl Hovland, conceding that the closures will have “negative consequences” for many. “But as we evaluate the situation now, we don’t have any other choice.” They don’t want to risk any other bridges collapsing like the one over the Lågen River at Tretten in Gudbrandsdalen did on Monday.
In addition to the five bridges in Eidsvoll, eight others will close in Fredrikstad, Indre Østfold (Bliksland Bridge), Kongsberg, Stor-Elvdal, Eidskog, Åsnes, Kongsvinger and Vang, all in the counties of Viken and Innlandet. The Skytebanen Bridge at Grane in Nordland will also close.
The goal is to prevent any further collapses, even though the closures will lead to local traffic disruptions. State officials said, meanwhile, that it will take at least another few day before they can reopen the major E6 highway, over which the bridge at Tretten collapsed in addition to the portion that crossed the river.