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A newly constructed bridge in northern Ontario has reportedly split apart in the cold, closing the Trans-Canada highway — the only road connecting Eastern and Western Canada — indefinitely.
The Nipigon River Bridge has been closed for "an indefinite time due to mechanical issues," according to the Ontario Provincial Police. Local reports suggest an expansion joint has failed.
originally posted by: seaswine
That's really the only roadway connecting east/west Canada?
There have to be some "little county road" types somewhere right? To have only one road is, well... Ignorant?
Ashley Littlefield, who lives in nearby Dorion, Ont., witnessed the failure Sunday afternoon as she was driving with her husband.
"As we turned onto the highway, we saw the whole bridge — a kind of big gust of wind came underneath it and blew it up and then it came back down," she said, adding it shifted by about half a metre.
Bridges are much more susceptible to temperature fluctuation because cold air travels both above and below the bridge, The Weather Network meteorologists explain. Under extremely cold conditions the bridge is more susceptible to contract, adding strain to the overall structural integrity of the bridge. While this does not entirely explain what exactly caused the Nipigon bridge to split, this could be a contributing factor.