Bridge closures impact schedules for Charleston residents Friday morning

Bridge closures impact schedules for Charleston residents Friday morning

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Temperatures Friday night were almost as low as Thursday, but officials from the South Carolina Department of Transportation are not expecting any bridges to be closed.

Despite the department's efforts, cold temperatures and freezing rain left bridge surfaces frozen, and forced SCDOT crews to shut down bridges Friday morning.

Those closures had a large impact on some people's days.

"I'm sure in some way or form, it affected everybody," Mount Pleasant resident Matt Ovadenko said.

Ovadenko is one of the people the closures affected.

He works from home, but he had to re-schedule a doctor's appointment because employees couldn't cross the bridge.

"It just kind of messed up the rest of my day, and I had to jumble the rest of the day around," Ovadenko said.

SCDOT took several steps last night to prepare for the frozen rain.

Crews threw brine down on the road Thursday night, and once the bridges froze Friday morning, crews covered them in salt.

"Precipitation starts freezing at 32 degrees and with that brine solution on it, which is a salt water solution, it lowers that number from freezing at 32 degrees to about 27 degrees," South Carolina Department of Transportation Representative James Law said. "It doesn't stop anything."

The roads were back open by 9 a.m., but people like Ovadenko said the temporary closure had an impact on the rest of their day.

"I know a lot of people take those bridges every day," Ovadenko said. "Lucky for me, I don't have to, but I know it affects a lot of other people."

But Law said anytime they do close the bridges, it's only in the interest of public safety.

"The most important thing, and what we are charged with doing, is keeping the driving public as safe as possible," Law said.

SCDOT will not be laying out any brine or salt Friday night because even though temperatures might reach the freezing point, there's no threat of rain or other moisture hitting the bridges.

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