That Pittsburgh bridge that collapsed Friday morning prior President Biden‘s arrival in Iron City was not known to be compromised and was not scheduled for maintenance via the federal infrastructure bill, according to government records.
The disaster left three inmates and 10 others injured near Frick Park early Friday morning. Although no deaths have been reported and all victims are in stable condition, the massive collapse shook the city and surrounding area.
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The city’s 2021 Transportation Improvement Program, which was commissioned to allocate federal funding for transportation infrastructure, did not take into account the Frick Park Bridge.
The bridge was built in 1970. The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, which rates bridges on a scale of 0 to 9 – 9, which represents the best condition – rated the substructure of the now collapsed bridge at a 6, according to NBC News. The bridge’s deck and superstructure had ratings of 4, according to PennDOT.
President Biden stopped by the site of the crash Friday afternoon. It quickly became a symbol of deteriorating infrastructure in American cities, and Biden used the destruction of the bridge in his rhetoric since.
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“I’ve been coming to Pittsburgh for a long time – and as a former Pennsylvania resident. But I was not aware that there are literally more bridges in Pittsburgh than any other city in the world,” Biden said at the collapsed bridge.
Biden promised the crowd that the city’s bridge infrastructure would be treated along with all 43,000 bridges in the United States
“I knew there were a lot of bridges – I had no idea,” Biden said of the nationwide total. “And we will fix them all. It’s not a joke. This is going to be a gigantic change. There are 43,000 nationwide and we’re sending them money.”
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The United States Army Reserve was deployed to ensure there were no casualties under the bridge after the collapse. Pittsburgh Fire Chief Darryl Jones said a gas leak caused by the collapse was “under control,” adding that families asked to evacuate during the leak have returned home and their gas supply has been restored.