tr?id=&ev=PageView&noscript=

Biden Visits Collapsed Bridge, Touts Infrastructure Law in Pittsburgh

Joe Biden

President Joe Biden visits the site where the Fern Hollow Bridge collapsed Friday, Jan. 28, 2022, in Pittsburgh's East End. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

By Associated Press

January 28, 2022

The bridge collapse — which caused no fatalities but prompted rescuers to form a human chain to retrieve people from a precariously perched bus — offered Biden a striking example of what he has declared is an urgent need for investments in the country’s infrastructure.

PITTSBURGH — Arriving just hours after a serious bridge collapse, President Joe Biden stared into the cratered muddy earth where the aging span fell early Friday, striking evidence supporting the $1 trillion infrastructure law he already had planned to tout on his trip to Pittsburgh.

Standing before concrete barriers papered with yellow police tape, Biden craned his neck to look out over the expanse left by the crumbled bridge. He spoke with first responders at the scene and Pittsburgh Mayor Ed Gainey, as a light snow dusted the wreckage.

“The idea that we’ve been so far behind on infrastructure for so many years, it’s mind boggling,” Biden said. 

As for the rest of the nation’s aging bridges, he pledged, “We’re gonna fix them all.”

The bridge collapse — which caused no fatalities but prompted rescuers to form a human chain to retrieve people from a precariously perched bus — offered Biden a striking example of what he has declared is an urgent need for investments in the country’s infrastructure.

The steel span was built in 1970, and a 2019 inspection revealed the deck and superstructure to be in poor condition, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Bridge Inventory.

The infrastructure law signed by Biden has earmarked about $1.6 billion for Pennsylvania bridge maintenance, with tens of billions more for public transit, highway maintenance and broadband internet expansion in the state.

During his visit, Biden was to tour a manufacturing research and development center before delivering remarks promoting economic progress during his first year in office and the investments his administration has helped foster in American manufacturing jobs. He was also expected to call on Congress to pass new legislation aimed at increasing U.S. competitiveness with China and invest billions to support supply chain resilience and semiconductor chip research and manufacturing.

Friday’s trip was an opening step in a broader campaign to promote White House achievements in key states before the midterm elections. It brought Biden, a Pennsylvania native, home to one of the top-targeted states this cycle. The Pennsylvania battle to replace Republican Sen. Pat Toomey, who is not seeking reelection, is expected to be one of the most competitive Senate races this year.

Author

CATEGORIES: Uncategorized
Related Stories
Share This