Media release: Benmore bridge closed
News item information
The Benmore bridge has been closed because it is structurally unsound.
Southland District Council group manager services and assets Matt Russell said the bridge was closed on Thursday afternoon after it was found to be unsafe and at risk of failure.
Staff notified as many people in the area as possible.
“It’s a combination of age but people have abused the restrictions on the bridge, posing significant risk to Council and to road users,” Mr Russell said.
The bridge has had weight and speed restrictions on it for several years and physical restrictions including bollards and sideboards to restrict the width for about two years.
“The risk of failure is too great so the decision was made to close it.”
A report on the future of the bridge will go to Council early next year.
The nearest bridge is 8km to the north at Dipton East, and there is one 14km south at Centre Bush.