60% of Iowa Bridges Rated "Fair" or "Poor"

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Outline of the State of Iowa

More than 60 percent of bridges in Iowa are in fair or poor condition says a state report chronicled in the Iowa Capital Dispatch.

The Iowa Department of Transportation (IDOT) noted that even bridges rated as “poor” are not necessarily unsafe. “The poor category does not indicate there is a safety issue,” the IDOT report said. “Poor bridges have deterioration or damage that may need repair or replacement in the near future.”

If a bridge is found to be unsafe, it will be closed, IDOT officials wrote. In the most recent year of inspections, 348 state and local bridges were closed.

In its report, IDOT highlighted that the number of “poor” bridges on state highways stands at 32, down from 237 in 2009, and three fewer than last year. Half of those bridges are over 43 years old, the Dispatch reported.

Overall, Iowa has 4,497 bridges rated “poor” and 9,996 listed as “fair” for a total of 60.8 percent. Another 9,340 bridges are considered in “good” condition based on inspections required by the Federal Highway Administration.

Source: Iowa Capital Dispatch