Tilting bridge ‘plan of attack’ discussed

The Old Trolley Bridge over the Clackamas River began dangerously shifting, March 7, 2014 (KOIN 6 News)
The Old Trolley Bridge over the Clackamas River began dangerously shifting, March 7, 2014 (KOIN 6 News)

GLADSTONE, Ore. (KOIN) — More than a day after support beams on one end of an abandoned trolley bridge began to give way, the area is now patrolled around-the-clock and the bridge owners — Union Pacific Railroad — are discussing different options.

Railroad officials know they have to do something, but they just don’t know exactly what.

On Thursday, crews working near the Old Trolley Bridge, about one mile upriver from the confluence with the Willamette River, observed its piling shifting. Over the course of a few hours, the top of the piling had shifted 6 feet towards Oregon City.

“We’re still trying to get in and get around the bridge as best we can as we identify these alternatives,” said spokesperson Brock Nelson. “But for now it’s keep everybody away. We’ve got a variety of different experts working on this thing and I hope to get ta point where we can start talking about a plan of attack here in the near future.”

A representative for Union Pacific Railroad told KOIN 6 News scenarios range from simply monitoring the bridge to demolishing it or something inbetween.

The Gladstone Police Department is in charge of public safety in the area. They established a 100-foot barrier from the bridge, and that area is being patrolled around-the-clock by a private security firm paid for by the railroad.

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