If you’ve ever rolled down your window or held your breath while driving over a bridge, you’re not alone. Fear of bridges collapsing or your car going over the side is a common phobia. It can be dangerous to drive on a bridge, but the same can be said for any road. However, bridges and overpasses do provide some dangers that regular roads may not. If you got into an auto accident on a bridge, contact an experienced Pikeville, KY personal injury lawyer for legal advice and skilled representation.

What Are the Dangers of Driving on a Bridge?

Unfortunately, there are a variety of dangers that are unique to or heightened by driving over a bridge. Bridges tend to offer drivers narrower roads and lanes. This takes away some safe space and room for error. It can also contribute to limited stopping distances.

They can also lack some safety features such as a shoulder on the side of the road. Shoulders provide drivers with a space that they can swerve onto to avoid a collision. Additionally, shoulders and grassy areas nearby allow for gutters to be placed further away from the road and aid in preventing hydroplaning during heavy rainfall. Bridges tend to have poorer drainage systems.

Bridges also have weight limits due to their suspended nature which can cause strain when there is too much weight. It can also prevent the ability to resurface the roads or fill in potholes frequently as that would add weight.

Another danger of driving on a bridge is that bridges and overpasses freeze faster than regular roads. When the road freezes it is because the air above it is so cold that it causes the road to ice over. However, a bridge gets airflow both above and below the road, meaning that it is exposed to twice the amount of cold air.

What Are the Most Common Accidents on a Bridge?

There are some accidents that are more common than others when driving over a bridge. Because of the above-mentioned dangers, rear-end collisions, side impacts, and multi-car pileups tend to occur on bridges. A less likely accident would be a car veering and falling off of the bridge.

The extent of the damage and injuries sustained from a bridge auto accident will depend on the specific circumstances of your situation like the amount of cars involved, the speed you were traveling, the weather, and more.

Is there a Danger of the Bridge Collapsing?

For a person with a substantial fear of bridges, thoughts that the bridge will collapse while they are going over or under it likely plague their mind. Bridges are made from steel, concrete, asphalt, and other metals and stones. They are massive and heavy structures so the idea that they could collapse doesn’t seem all that crazy. Fortunately, however, it is a rare occurrence.

There are a few reasons that a bridge may collapse, however. They can include the following.

  • Too much weight
  • Neglected maintenance
  • Poor design
  • Defective structure
  • Construction incidents
  • Natural disasters
  • Foreign object striking structure