According to DelDOT, testing has begun on the Mispillion River drawbridge after months of repairs to the historic structure. The bridge has been closed since February as crews work to repair damage caused after the bridge was struck two separate times by construction equipment.
“Testing of the drawbridge function is underway and we expect to reopen the bridge soon,” Charles “C.R.” McLeod, Director of Community Relations, said. “We’ll share an opening date as soon as we have it.”
The Mispillion Bridge, located on Rehoboth Boulevard, was inoperable since it was damaged by a truck towing construction equipment in December 2021. Initially, DelDOT indicated they did not intend to repair the bridge, leading to lawsuits from the owners of fishing vessels housed at the Vineyard Shipyard over the winter. In July 2022, DelDOT announced they planned to repair the bridge. However, those plans were delayed after another vehicle struck the bridge again on December 30, 2022.
DelDOT was not sure why two different vehicles struck the bridge since the height was clearly marked.
“We can’t say why the bridge has now been struck twice in the past year as there is posted signage about height clearance before and on the bridge itself,” Jason Hastings, Chief of Bridges and Structures with DelDOT said in January 2023. “We are evaluating whether additional measures need to be installed to help warn drivers of the vertical clearance.”
Announcements will be made by DelDOT when the bridge can reopen to traffic again.
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