Abernethy Bridge ‘vital link’ if big quake hits

Bridge that links West Linn and Oregon City is "seismically vulnerable"

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The Abernethy Bridge connects West Linn and Oregon City. (brx0 via Flickr Creative Commons)

WEST LINN, Ore. (KOIN) — Will Oregon’s roads and bridges stay standing in the event of a major quake?

Governor Kate Brown toured the Abernethy Bridge Thursday and spoke with transportation officials about how to secure the state’s most vulnerable roadways.

“Interstate 205 is one of the most critical corridors in Oregon, moving people and goods throughout the entire metropolitan region and, frankly, throughout the entire state,” Brown said. “Anyone who lives and travels here knows I-205 is known for its mind numbing traffic.”

The Abernethy Bridge connects 2 key areas between West Linn and Oregon City.

It could be a lifeline in the event of a major earthquake, that is, if it stays standing.

Gov. Brown says securing funds to fix vulnerable highways is her top priority. (KOIN)
Gov. Brown says securing funds to fix vulnerable highways is her top priority. (KOIN)

“This is a vital link throughout the entire state,” Brown said. “This bridge is seismically vulnerable and would not be operational after ‘the big one.'”

Brown says securing funds to revitalize Oregon’s roads and highways will be her top priority during the next legislative session.

She and the Oregon Department of Transportation will investigate which seismic improvements are needed to keep Oregon’s transportation network strong.

The Sellwood Bridge was recently replaced to keep it strong in the event of a quake.

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