Bridge tighten-up brings back memories of long-term closure

Council workers check on how the Molesworth Street bridge is settling in after its 2012 restoration.
Council workers check on how the Molesworth Street bridge is settling in after its 2012 restoration.

The Molesworth Street bridge has undergone a health check after its 2012 refurbishment following damage suffered in the 2011 floods.

Tenterfield Shire Council advised that the work involved tightening running plank and decking bolts as well as girder bolts and a general check of the bridge, all out of council’s operational budget for bridge maintenance.

During the repairs workers found that the structure supporting the sewage pipe beside the bridge was also compromised. Temporary repairs will be carried out, with replacement of the current steel pipe with a lighter-weight poly pipe to happen in the future. 

“The community will be very pleased to see the scheduled maintenance to the Molesworth Street bridge,” Mayor Peter Petty said.

“Everyone was aware of the circumstances of the damage to the bridge in 2011. They can now be reassured that the bridge will remain safe for many years to come.”

Back in January 2011 a gaping hole appeared in the eastern approach to the Molesworth Street bridge, attempting to swallow an RFS truck.

Back in January 2011 a gaping hole appeared in the eastern approach to the Molesworth Street bridge, attempting to swallow an RFS truck.

For those who need a refresher, during raging floods in January 2011 a Rural Fire Services truck fell into a hole on the eastern approach to the bridge and the bridge remained closed until repairs were completed in July 2012.

Plans at the time to replace the timber bridge with a concrete one were dashed by the estimated $1.7 million price tag.

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