Load restrictions on the southbound side of Fords Bridge on Interstate 5, just north of Canyonville, Ore., have been lifted ahead of schedule.
The Oregon Department of Transportation made the announcement Thursday. Northbound lanes were already reopen.
All normal and annual permit truck traffic is now allowed on the bridge, including loads up to 105,500 pounds that move under annual permits and heavy-hauls less than 98,000 pounds that move under annual permit. Single trip permit loads over these weights will not be routed over the bridge.
Cracks in the concrete forced ODOT to post load restrictions March 5 so repairs could be made on the bridge, which was stressing under loads more than 64,000 pounds. The cost to repair Fords Bridge is estimated at $700,000, but some time within the next five years, the state will replace the aging structure.
The bridge was built in 1957 to handle loads up to 72,000 pounds gross vehicle weight. Today, a legal load allowed on Oregon’s highways (without a special permit) is 80,000 pounds. Annual heavy haul permits allow 98,000-pound loads to travel on any unrestricted road in the state.