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Here's how engineers inspect Ohio's tallest bridge

Posted at 7:01 PM, Apr 05, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-05 20:34:23-04

OREGONIA, Ohio -- When it's time for engineers to do their annual inspection of the Jeremiah Morrow Bridge, they can't just use a ladder. 

The bridge crosses 240 feet over the Little Miami River. It's the tallest bridge in Ohio. So the Ohio Department of Transportation uses a truck with a "snooper bucket" to get a look underneath it. 

"It's a very unique bridge, so this is definitely not the normal day," structural engineer Jared Backs said. "So it's fun."

The bucket's long arm lets the engineers get as close as they want to any part of the bridge, according to Backs. 

Six inspectors make up the team. 

Any span-crossing over 10 feet is considered a bridge in Ohio. Collett said there are about 42,000 bridges statewide, including about 1,500 in the Greater Cincinnati area. 

"We are looking for any crack, any deterioration, spauling, rusting," structures planning engineer Brandon Collett said. "Usually, anything that has an issue has a different color."