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Report: Dozens of Steel Bolts on New Cuomo Bridge Broke

Kevin P. Coughlin/Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo
Kevin P. Coughlin/Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

An investigation is underway into possible bridge safety issues on the new Mario Cuomo Bridge.

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A source told NBC dozens of steel bolts that are used to help hold together the Mario Cuomo Bridge broke apart during construction, causing concern for some who feel the bridge may not be safe.

A whistleblower turned over recordings showing officials knew of the bolt defects which prompted an investigation.

In a transcript of a recording, a foreman talked about a bolt failure and said, “It’s a major defect that does not normally occur,” according to NBC.

The New York state attorney general is investigating the issue and the surrounding corruption allegations, NBC reports.

A spokeswoman for Tappan Zee Constructors tells Hudson Valley Post there hasn’t been an issue with hundreds of bolts that were tested.

“To the extent that inquiries or concerns have been raised regarding the quality of the A490 bolts, Tappan Zee Constructors (TZC) has fully cooperated by providing documentation, hundreds of actual bolts for testing and access to our employees. To date, all bolt testing performed by multiple parties indicates there is not an issue with the bolts,” Tappan Zee Constructors Spokeswoman Laura Ware told Hudson Valley Post. “Despite TZC’s continuous request that it be provided with any updated information concerning the quality of the A490 bolts, TZC has not been provided with, nor is it aware of any information that is contrary to these bolt testing results. TZC has demonstrated a constant willingness to address any additional issues and will continue to do so.”

 

 

A Thruway Authority spokesperson told Hudson Valley Post independent experts were hired to check the safety of the bolts before the span was opened to traffic.

“Well over a year ago, the Thruway Authority hired independent experts to check the safety of the bolts on the new bridge. After a thorough review, and before the first span of the new bridge opened to traffic, the independent experts concluded that the actual bolts and the bridge are safe. Public safety is our highest priority and the bridge is completely safe for the traveling public,”  Thruway Authority spokesperson told Hudson Valley Post in an email.

Engineers tell NBC there’s no immediate safety issue, but the cover-up raises questions the bolts used on the bridge will need to be inspected or replaced.

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