Calculating the real cost of the QC’s truck eating bridges

News

They are odd incidents now fairly common in the Quad Cities; it’s even gotten to the point where a lot of people expect them.

We’re talking about the truck eating bridges. 

We brought you another instance this week when a rental truck slammed into the bridge on Brady Street in Davenport. 

There are actually two of them, the other one is on Harrison Street. 

Local 4 News wanted to go beyond the incident and show you how often this happens and the cost to taxpayers.

Here’s what we found out from Davenport Police: 

 Harrison St.Brady St.
20151 incident8 incidents
201658
201777
201847

* Harrison Street was closed for a long portion of 2015 due to construction

“I was surprised he went for it.”

Amel Nuhanovic moved to Davenport about four months ago and this week, he experienced a sort of induction into the QC. 

“I did drive by it and I feel bad for the guy driving it,” he says. 

“I thought that was the first time that’s happened, so surprised.” 

But it’s not the first.

Victoria Green has lived in Davenport for three years now. 

“Personally seen like three or four trucks and the aftermath,” she says.

They’re talking about the truck-eating bridges. 

And so far this year, 11 drivers have already found themselves in a jam. 

“Guaranteed. It’s like, the sun is going to come up in the East tomorrow, it’ll happen, it’s just a matter of when,” says Lt. Shawn Voigts with Davenport Police. 

Over the past two and half decades, he’s seen dozens of those 9-1-1 calls, despite more warning signs over the years. 

“I think the city and the state have done as much as we possibly can right now,” he says.

 “Short of having a person standing there 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”

An average size car or SUV can clear the bridge with no problem, but when it comes to your truck. Voigts says you don’t want to bet on the bridge.

“Refrigerated trucks, tanker trucks– even flatbeds who thought they were fine,” Voigts says. 

And although the truck eating bridge has become “a laughing stock,” as Green says– Voigts says there are serious consequences. 

“I’ve had drivers that call their company and pretty much the company fires them on the spot. They’re from somewhere else nowhere near here and all of a sudden now they’re in Davenport with no job and no transportation.” 

He says it can take anywhere between two and 30 first responders ranging from two hours to a whole day to slip a semi truck out.

Local 4 News crunched some numbers.

Based on an average Davenport officer’s salary of about $54,000, based on Glassdoor.com, responding to a stuck truck can cost taxpayers up to $600 for a 24-hour job.

Voigt stresses that the solution is simple: Pay attention to the truck you’re driving and the roads you’re driving on. 

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