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56,000 U.S. bridges need repair, millions of passengers in danger

Staff Writer |
Almost 56,000 U.S. bridges are structurally deficient, down slightly from a year ago, with underperforming spans including New York's Brooklyn Bridge.

About 1,900 structurally deficient bridges are on interstate highways and vehicles cross underperforming U.S. spans 185 million times a day, the analysis of federal data by the American Road and Transportation Builders Association found.

The U.S. highway system "is outdated, overused, underfunded and in desperate need of modernization," Alison Premo Black, the association's chief economist, said in a statement.

The group's report was based on an analysis of data from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s 2016 National Bridge Inventory.

The builders' group said 55,710 bridges, or about 9 percent of U.S. spans, were structurally deficient, a share that is down 0.5 percent from a 2015 bridge report.

"While these bridges may not be imminently unsafe, they are in need of attention," the group said.

Of the most-traveled underperforming bridges, the top 14 are in California. No. 1 is the Interstate 110 bridge over Los Angeles County's Dominguez Channel, which vehicles cross 274,000 times a day. â–