The International Information Center for Structural Engineers

Wednesday, 17 July 2019 01:00cat

Historic bridge collapses in Ohio: Footage recorded on camera

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Historic bridge collapses in Ohio Historic bridge collapses in Ohio

One of the longest covered bridges in Ohio, constructed more than 150 years ago, collapsed.

The 3-span Knowlton Covered Bridge used to provide a passage over the Little Muskingum River.

The bridge's middle span suddenly collapsed on Friday, July 5, 2019 and the incident was caught on camera (watch the video below). Fortunately, there were no victims.

There is insufficient information concerning the actual timeline of the bridge's construction but according to Monroe County Commissioners Records, it was completed in 1867.

8 years later, the County Commissioners decided to replace the abutments of the bridge that were highly damaged by floods. However, it is unknown whether the bridge's approaches or abutments were repaired in the end. "The approaches to the bridge on Clear Fork of Muskingum Creek having been washed away, the County Commissioners will meet there on Tuesday the 17 inst, to let the contract for the repair of the same," the local newspaper reported on August 10, 1875. In any case, it seems that the current approach spans were built in 1884.

The bridge remained solid for 14 years until 1896 when its abutments were damaged by another flood. The structure was soon rebuilt, however, the details of the re-construction works remain unknown. "Last week this county was visited by the heaviest rainfall and most destructive floods ever known to our people. Thursday night and Friday it rained almost incessantly and the runs and creeks were swollen until they spread from hill to hill, sweeping almost everything before them...The Miller bridge, the Roth bridge, the Atkinson run bridge, the Payne's run bridge and the Negro run bridge along Sunfish creek, were washed away. On Muskingum creek the I.N. Dougherty bridge was washed away and the Foreaker bridge and the Long bridge at Rinard's Mills were damaged. It is also reported that the bridge at Pryor's station was carried off. The county commissioners are making an investigation of the bridges this week and will take steps at once to repair them," the local newspaper reported back then.


Historical background:


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