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Washington Street Bridge Shut Down

August 21st, 2017 by WCBC Radio

The City of Cumberland Engineering Department has announced that the CSX vehicular bridge on Washington Street will close indefinitely to traffic beginning Tuesday, August 22nd   to protect public safety. 

As a result of the findings of the most recent Allegany County bridge inspection report and the recent incident in which a train struck the bridge, the Washington Street Bridge will remain closed indefinitely in the interest of public safety.

“We have met with CSX officials on numerous occasions to attempt to convince CSX to properly maintain their bridges.  CSX’s proposed solution, however, includes the City of Cumberland assuming ownership and responsibility for the Washington Street, Cumberland Street and Fayette Street bridges.  Regardless of how or why that would occur, that outcome is unacceptable to the City,” said Mayor Brian Grim.

In January a delegation of City officials met in Annapolis with State officials to seek assistance in dealing with CSX regarding the ongoing issue of CSX bridge maintenance.  “Unfortunately, the State also has difficulty in dealing with CSX and we were unable resolve the issue,” said Grim.

Allegany County Board of Commissioners President Jake Shade visited the site after the most recent train strike.  "The bridge was already in poor condition as indicated in the County's most recent bridge inspection report. This factor combined with the event that occurred Saturday has caused us to close the bridge. Safety of the community is our top concern." said Shade.

There is no timeline for reopening the bridge.  Residents may express their concerns to CSX Corporation at Tell CSX (877-835-5279).

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