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State DOT completes bridge reinspections

CONYERS - State transportation officials said Wednesday they had completed reinspections of bridges affected by a series of falsified inspections and that all were deemed safe.

The Georgia Department of Transportation had to direct all its bridge inspectors from across the state in February to reinspect bridges in Rockdale, DeKalb, Fulton and Gwinnett counties after it was learned two bridge inspectors had faked their inspections beginning in November.

GDOT gave bridge status reports to Rockdale County officials on 24 bridges during that timeframe that have since been reinspected and their conditions confirmed.

Most of the bridges in Rockdale County have had good inspection reports in the past and required only routine maintenance. However, there are a few bridges rated in poor condition that are near the end of their expected life spans.

Two bridges in particular, Irwin Bridge Road at the Yellow River and Flat Bridge Road at the South River, were rated in poor conditions in 2003, warranting reduction in their posted weight loads.

GDOT spokesman David Spear said the department was put into a tight deadline to reinspect all of the affected bridges. Data collected from the bridge inspections are due to the federal Highway Administration on April 1 each year.

Jay Jones can be reached at jay.jones@rockdalecitizen.com.