A portion of West Randolph could be closed for up to six months after a bridge collapsed Wednesday night after a city fire truck drove over it.

The bridge, in the 2900 block of West Randolph, fell after the fire truck crossed it at 8:23 p.m. No one was injured. No vehicle was on the bridge at the time.

City Manager Eric Ben-son said Enid Fire Chief Phil Clover and a crew had just crossed the bridge during an emergency call when they felt a bump and looked back to see the bridge collapse.

“We’re very fortunate we didn’t lose a fire truck,” Benson said.

Jim McClain, city of Enid public works director, said the 100-foot bridge, which spans a drainage channel for stormwater about two blocks west of Waller Junior High School, could cost as much as $250,000 to replace.

“It’s going to be closed quite some time,” McClain said, estimating it could be four to six months. “It’s an expensive item to replace.”

A city employee said the bridge is inspected every two years, and following the most recent inspection officials had the weight limit lowered to 13 tons. McClain said the bridge was scheduled to be replaced, although no time frame had been established.

The ladder truck that crossed the bridge before its collapse weighs about 37 tons.

“There is a sign on each side of the bridge that says 13 tons, and we drove over it with a 75,000-pound truck,” said Enid Fire Chief Phil Clover. “I’m just happy no one got hurt.”

Clover said he had met with the department’s apparatus committee Monday and said the department needed maps of all bridges in the city and county with weight limits. He said the committee had not had time to get him the information.

“Trucks go over it every day,” Clover said.

Dwight Buckles, who lives in the area, said he drove over the bridge about 4 p.m., and it didn’t feel any different than normal.

He said a “tremendous” amount of traffic uses the bridge daily.

Buckles lives about two blocks west of Waller and said when parents take their children to school in the morning they often are backed up past his house.

Many students also walk across the bridge to and from school each day. School buses also use the bridge, as do city trash trucks.

City crews, Enid police officers and firefighters were at the site Wednesday night, drawing crowds of people from surrounding neighborhoods who came to the scene with regular and cell phone cameras.



Six wooden pylons protruded upward in the darkness between the two sections of the bridge, lined by curled guardrails and pieces of broken concrete with veins of reinforcement bar exposed.

“We will fix it,” Benson said. “We will close the street, probably three blocks east and three blocks west.”

School officials will reroute buses, said Amber Graham Fitzgerald, director of school and community relations for Enid Public Schools. She also urged parents and students to allow extra time to get to Waller.



Fitzgerald said Jim Gelsthorpe, EPS transportation director, said Enid school buses weigh seven to 10 tons, with the high end being a fully loaded, fully equipped 66-passenger bus

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