Brent Spence repair effort receives $12 million federal emergency grant

Brent Spence repair effort receives $12 million federal emergency grant
A truck carrying potassium hydroxide crashed into a jackknifed truck on the Brent Spence Bridge around 2:45 a.m. Wednesday. (Image: KYTC District 6) (Source: KYTC District 6)

CINCINNATI (FOX19) - The U.S. Department of Transportation has awarded a $12 million federal grant to the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet for repairs to the Brent Spence Bridge, Ohio Sen. Rob Portman announced Friday evening.

The “quick release” federal grant funding authorizes an Emergency Relief Program from the Federal Highway Administration, according to U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao.

The grant is designated for repairs or reconstruction of federal-aid highways and roads on federal lands that have suffered serious damage, Portman’s office says.

“These funds will help the safe and timely repair of the Brent Spence Bridge, which is such an important transportation link between Kentucky and Ohio and one of the busiest freight corridors in our nation,” Chao remarked Friday evening.

Chao says the “quick release” funding will be used to initiate the most critical repairs to the damaged roadway. She adds the funds are considered a down-payment on the costs of short-term repairs now, which can make long-term repair work possible in the weeks ahead.

“This $12 million Department of Transportation grant to repair Brent Spence Bridge is good news for Ohio and Kentucky," Portman said in a statement. "I applaud the Department of Transportation and Secretary Chao for moving quickly to provide this immediate assistance to fix the serious damage caused earlier this week by the fiery crash on the bridge.

"I will continue to work with local, state, and federal officials to help secure the resources needed to get the bridge operational as quickly as possible as well as an eventual, long-term replacement.”

The bridge has been closed since a fiery crash early Wednesday morning.

It could remain closed for a month or more, transportation officials said Thursday.

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