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Lawrence County Bridge Inspection Complete, Several Bridges in Need of Repair
Updated July 10, 2018 12:58 PM
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(BEDFORD) - David Holmes, Lawrence County Highway Superintendent says the bridge inspection for the county's 128 bridges is complete, but not before officials found some issues.

Bridge 121 on Dillman Road over Indian Creek is being lowered from 12 tons to 5 tons.

"That means no school buses will be able to cross the bridge," Holmes says, "But that will not be an issue. They had to air on the side of caution and close the bridge because of potential beam issues."

The bridge is on the list to be replaced.

Bridge 160 on Oolitic Road over the abandoned railroad tracks near Knucklehead Bend has a hole on the west side of the deck close to the driving lane.

Crews placed a steel plate over the hole and traffic cones around the plate. Traffic will be shifted away from the hole until it can be repaired.

The plan is to take down the bridge in the future, fill it in and construct a road.

Bridge 166 on Tunnelton Dennison Road was closed because it is sagging.

"We closed it until I can get some expert advice," says Holmes.

Bridge 139 the historic iron Saddle Barn Bridge that spans Leatherwood Creekacross from Otis Park is closed until further notice due to structural deficiency.

Inspectors say Bridge 121 on Williams Silversville Road over Indian Creek is in poor shape.

The bridge is now rated at 3 tons, meaning no trucks or school buses can cross the bridge. Signs have been posted notifying drivers of the new weight limit.

Holmes warned residents to not remove or drive past barricades at the closed bridges.

"There are there for a reason," Holmes added. "I know it is not convenient but people need to know they are closed for safety issues. We had no choice we were ordered to close them and that is what we did. We have a big task ahead of us but we have been there before."

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Lawrence County Sheriff Mike Branham reported as of Tuesday morning that there were 187 inmates in the jail. Of those 37 were females, 14 Level 6 felons and there was 1 Department of Correction hold.

Sheriff Branham says the jail inspectors were at the jail this morning.

The major complaint the last several months is the air conditioning unit is not keeping the jail cool.

"The cell block has 20 foot ceilings, and people forget just how large the jail is," Sheriff Branham added. "It is hard when its in the high 90s or 100 degrees to keep it cool."

Branham says he is having the inspector check and double check the cooling system in the jail.

Two new school resource officers are completing training.

Officer Tim Butcher will be on patrol at the high school and BJ Fulkerson will serve the middle schools.
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Surveyor Corey Allen requested permission to spend $7,500 of his budget to contract with Frontier to preserve the county's 200 year old documents and plat books on geographic information system.

"We need to stop people from physically touching the 200 plus year documents to keep them from falling apart," Allen told the commissioners. "We have around 900 pages of documents."

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The commissioners also mentioned the retirement of Reggie Nikirk, "Clerk of Works." Nikirk retired this month after more than 29 years of service

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