Cobb County leaders approved installing another device protecting the Concord Road covered bridge from drivers who ignore all the warning signs and add themselves to the wall of shame of people who smack their too-tall vehicles into metal beams protecting the structure.
Commissioners at their April 23 meeting approved a contract with Detection Engineering Technology, Inc. to install two additional notification devices for the bridge. The company will perform the work at a cost not to exceed $19,540.
The system will feature a traffic signal mast arm with plastic-covered PVC pipes that will be suspended at a seven-foot clearance, which is the same maximum height for the one-lane bridge.
After drivers see existing static warning signs, vehicles that are too large to pass through the bridge will strike the pipes. Drivers will then see existing electronic warning signs identifying a vehicle that is too tall to pass through the structure and (hopefully) turn around to avoid becoming another statistic. The county said it hopes the new devices will be installed by the end of May.
Cobb County hopes this new system will eliminate the number of close calls reported at the bridge spanning Nickajack Creek just south of the East-West Connector.
There have been 18 near-hits recorded at the bridge since late 2017. The latest occurred April 9 when a U-Haul van slammed into a metal beam protecting the bridge.
“Despite multiple warning signs, including a flashing light that activates when a vehicle over seven feet tall drives down Concord Road, this has been an ongoing issue,” the county previously said. “Even though repair costs for DOT are minimal, traffic disruptions frustrate neighbors.”
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