Bridges — An Infrastructure Crisis

The bridge that collapsed in Baltimore has a lot of us thinking about the condition of the bridges we use. Some of us use one or more on a daily basis. And bridges are critical to the nation’s economy and the supply chain.

There are 42,000 bridges in the United States that have spans of 20 feet or more. Over 167 million vehicles traverse them each day. Thousands of them are very old and 80% of them are in need of repair.

Some are in desperate need because the structures that hold them up are beginning to fail. A decade ago the number of failing bridges was 15,800. No doubt that number has increased a lot since then.

The Biden administration pushed an infrastructure repair bill through Congress. In 2021 the Department of Transportation began to spend the $40 billion on bridges. That money will be spent over five years.

Though Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg says the law is already funding 7,800 bridge repair projects, that figure isn’t going to come close to touching the estimated $319 billion needed to address the crisis.

“The bottom line is that America’s bridges need a lot of work,” Buttigieg said. “The sooner we can address those significant bridges, the less likely they will be abruptly taken out of service, or worse, experience the risk of a collapse.”

National bridge inventory analysis from 2023 said of the 42,000 bridges in the United States, 7% are in poor condition.

Here is a look at the condition of the bridges in the 10 PIA Western Alliance states:


1675 bridges

136 — or 8% — are in poor condition


8,544 bridges

95 bridges — or 1% — are in poor condition


25,818 bridges

1,591 bridges — or 6% — are in poor condition


1,190 bridges

80 bridges — or 7% — are in poor condition


4,588 bridges

235 — or 5% — are in poor condition


5,218 bridges

358 — or 7% — are in poor condition


2,090 bridges

25 bridges — or 1% — are in poor condition

New Mexico

4,037 bridges

201 — or 5% — are in poor condition


8,292 bridges

401 — or 5% — are in poor condition


8,421 bridges

456 — or 5% — are in poor condition

Source link: Associated Press —

About PIA Western Alliance

The Professional Insurance Agents Western Alliance is a membership organization promoting and enhancing the success of independent agencies seeking to grow, learn and be heard within the industry.


More Industry News