The short-term repairs of the 81-year-old restricted bridge on Highway 130 near Carbon County Road 504, have been completed.
“The weight restrictions for legal loads traveling over this Wyoming Highway 130 structure, located east of Saratoga, have officially been lifted,” according to a Wyoming Department of Transportation press release sent out on March 31.
WYDOT crews working with the Reiman Corporation installed two steel I-beam supports placed on steel support posts under the center of this old wooden bridge to permit regular highway traffic to again cross this bridge.
After an inspection last year, this bridge was quietly designated restricted last November, however the new restricted use signs were not installed until March of 2021.
These new restrictions came to light when Jason Armbruster, the District Ranger for the Brush Creek/Hayden Ranger District, approached the Carbon County Commissioners at their March 2 meeting and informed them that loaded log trucks could no longer legally cross that old bridge to travel from Ryan Park to Saratoga with logs for the sawmill.
Armbruster was seeking the use of County Road 504, which is located less than a mile north-east of this restricted bridge, to reach Saratoga. The Commissioners quickly dismissed this idea due to the narrowness and poor condition of portions of that road.
When the extent of these new restrictions, which included restricted use by regular semi-trailer trucks, became public knowledge, WYDOT quickly announced plans to make temporary repairs to reinforce this bridge, until it could be replaced.
According to this press release WYDOT plans to replace this old bridge, built in 1940 with a new culvert “later this summer,” since this structure does serve as a drainage for the ridge and land to the north along County Road 504. With this new culvert in place there will no longer “be any weight restrictions for legal loads” on this section of the highway, according to this press release.
In the meantime, any “Oversized and/or overweight loads will still need to obtain proper permits and permissions from WYDOT to cross this structure.” More information about this bridge can be obtained from the Overweight Loads Office at (http://www.whp.dot.state.wy.us/home/owl.html