‘Make sure every inch of it is covered’: Hart Bridge undergoing biennial inspection

Jacksonville, FL — Crews with the Florida Department of Transportation are taking a closer look at the Hart Bridge to make sure it’s safe for you to use.

A group of FDOT inspectors and engineers are conducting an in-depth inspection.

“They’re gonna walk it from end to end, barrier wall to barrier wall, and just looking for deficiencies of any type,” said Hampton Ray, a spokesperson with FDOT.

They inspected the deck Saturday. That’s the part of the bridge you drive on. This type of inspection happens every two years.

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“We have obviously large structures and they’re under heavy traffic loading. So let’s take a closer look, make sure we don’t miss anything,” said Russ Hammock, the District Structure Maintenance Engineer at FDOT.

Part of the inspection includes checking up on older repairs. For example, making sure concrete patches from previous repairs are still holding.

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Every single nuance, from joints to cracks, is measured and documented.

“[It’s] kind of like a health check,” Hammock said. “Like if you were to go to the doctor for a yearly physical.”

On Monday, an underwater drone will look beneath the surface. And in a couple of weeks, climbers will scale the trusses. Expect some lane closures during those times.

These crews will cover every angle so your drive can be a smooth one.

“The bridge is safe,” Hammock added. “That’s why we do what we do, is to make sure that it stays that way.”

If crews find anything that needs immediate repair, they will shut down the bridge to traffic to do that. Any repairs that don’t need immediate attention will be scheduled by FDOT once the inspection is complete.