Combs Hehl bridge repairs delayed

HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, KY (FOX19) - Repair work that was to begin Friday, Dec. 5, to the eastbound Combs Hehl Bridge (I-275) near Cincinnati has been rescheduled due to a delay in shipment of structural replacement parts.

The project now is scheduled for the weekend beginning Friday, Dec. 12, provided weather is favorable.

Contractors for the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet are replacing two cracked splice plates and two adjacent plates on the eastbound span as part of an extensive inspection, metal testing and repair project.

Splice plates are connecting pieces that join other steel parts. Each splice plate weighs about 400 pounds and requires 123 bolts.

One lane has been closed to traffic on each span of the Combs Hehl throughout the project, and the weight limit on the eastbound span, which carries traffic from Kentucky to Ohio, has been reduced to 3 tons. Once repairs are completed to the cabinet's satisfaction, the weight restriction will be lifted but each lane closure will remain in effect as testing continues.

"We understand and are sensitive to the fact that bridge work usually creates an inconvenience to the traveling public," said Rob Hans, chief district engineer for the Department of Highways, District 6. "We are doing all we can to speed the process for repairs, but must also ensure the safety of the work crews and the thoroughness of our testing."