Washington DOT says Bridges in the State are Inspected Yearly - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Washington DOT says Bridges in the State are Inspected Yearly

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Yakima, WA -  Washington's Transportation Secretary says she is following the story about the bridge collapse in Minneapolis closely in an effort to understand what caused it to collapse.

The DOT says there are three bridges like it in Washington, but they are all in the Seattle area.

Most steel bridges in the state are called steel truss.  In other words, the steel support is above the road, but the foundation is concrete.

The bridge that collapsed in Minneapolis is a steel arch bridge, meaning the steel support is underneath.

The DOT says it monitors 3000 bridges across the state, and 450 in the south central region which includes Yakima County.

"Based out of Olympia, there's eight different teams that go around and look at every single bridge on our state highway system and each bridge is inspected every single year," says Don Whitehouse, Regional Administrator for the DOT's South Central Region.

Whitehouse says that about 75% of the bridges in the state are made of concrete.  The remaining 25% are built with steel.

Whitehouse says the steel arch bridge like the one in Minneapolis is an older design.

He tell us while that design can't be found in eastern Washington, there are three bridges that are considered structurally deficient in our region, but only one with a weight restriction.  That is the bridge on SR 241 near Mabton. 

Yakima County is also responsible for inspecting 312 bridges within the county's unincorporated area. 

Public Services says that right now, there are nine bridges that are structurally deficient in the county.