Pittsburgh neglected Fern Hollow Bridge warnings for years, federal investigation finds

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(Photo by Pamela Smith/PublicSource)

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Update (2/22/24): A spokesperson for Pittsburgh Mayor Ed Gainey, who took office just 25 days before the Fern Hollow collapse, responded to Wednesday’s NTSB findings that the city “did not have sufficient personnel or budgeted funds for bridge maintenance or repair” in the years leading up to the collapse.

City communications director Maria Montaño said in an email to PublicSource that Gainey’s Bridge Asset Management program, started in 2022, has reexamined inspection reports and load ratings for city-owned bridges since the January 2022 Fern Hollow disaster.

While the city has ramped up funding for bridge maintenance under Gainey, Montaño said “funding remains an area of focus,” and the city is working with consultants to find new funding sources to “get us to a point where we are being proactive with bridge maintenance and repair.”

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