Sunday, May 26, 2024

American Airlines Flight 191 Disaster on May 25, 1979 at O'Hare

I remember this airline crash. I wonder if the 273-death total (2 on the ground) is still the worst airline accident in the US history. And it would have been a lot worse if it fell on the nearby tank farm or mobile home park. (A comment suggested that the flight crew deliberately brought it down in a vacant area. I don't know if they had enough control to do that.) An engine fell off a DC-10 and severed the hydraulic lines that controlled the flaps. If I remember correctly, there were three hydraulic lines, each for a redundant system. Unfortunately, the lines were next to each other. A lesson learned from this accident is that the different hydraulic lines for the different redundant systems should be routed through different parts of the wing. I remember that the engine fell off because a forklift was incorrectly used when putting the engine back on the plane during a maintenance procedure.
Janet Morrow posted
Janet Bausch posted
Remembering American Airlines FLT 191, May 25, 1979.

Andrea Mather four posted four images with the comment: "Today we remember the American Airlines Flight 191 disaster. The lives lost will forever be in our hearts. This was the worst aviation disaster in US history."
Paul Webb shared with the comment: "It was 45 years ago today.✈️😢"
Paul Webb shared with the comment: "It was 45 years ago today.✈️😢"
Paul Webb shared with the comment: "It was 45 years ago today.✈️😢"
Bohdan Gajecky: Years later the final report said that the engine mount was not designed to be removed from the wing, but that the engine was to be removed from the mount.
But, there were fewer bolts holding the mount to the wing than there were holding the engine to the mount, so the maintenance people did what was easier, though fatally wrong.




Saturday, May 25, 2024

1954+2002 I-95 Fuller Warren Bridge over St. Johns River in Jacksonville, FL

(Archived Bridge HunterSatellite)

This photo is over a couple of decades old. It looks like today's bridge replaced a trunnion bridge. I wonder how often the old bridge stopped traffic on I-95.
Gregg Welliver posted, cropped
Jacksonville, Florida back in the day, new bridge construction over the St.Johns river@ I-95 looking south, that’s quite a Boom Party going on with The American crane out in front. This is a picture taken from the Facebook Jacksonville history page. Looks like a drawbridge on 95 years ago.

Street View, Apr 2024

The new bridge is 1.4 mile (2.25km) long. "The main span over the shipping channel is 250ft [76m] with a vertical clearance of 75ft. [23m]"
"The haunched pier segments transition from 120ft [3m] deep at the piers to 80ft [2m] deep at the ends." [I think the units should have been inches instead of feet for the depth of the girders.]

It looks like the traffic was stopped for a sailboat.

Was the fixed spans of the old bridge a continuous or cantilever design?

A 12-foot (3.7m) "shared use path" opened in Apr 2023. [news4jax]

Friday, May 24, 2024

Holcim/Dundee Cement


Street View, Oct 2022

Viv Rivera posted the comment: "Is there anything about the two silos that are there by calumet fisheries? I’d like to tell my kids more about them thanks in advance!"
Steve Malachinski: The silos belonged to a cement company. They received cement by railcar and transferred it into trucks.
[Several comments identified it as the Dundee Cement Company.]
Brian McCafferty: Believe Holcim/Skyway Cement (plant on 103rd Calumet River, west bank) recently owned them. Not sure if they still do.

Dennis DeBruler commented on Brian's comment
 Evidently Holcim does currently own it. That blue truck scale was added since I was last there.  wonder if they receive cement via lake freighter and/or barges because the rail service doesn't look intact.

Dennis DeBruler commented on Brian's comment
An Oct 2022 street view caught a truck on that scale According to other street views, the weeds were cleaned up and the scale added between Jul 2019 and Nov 2021.

Thursday, May 23, 2024

1954 95mw Flatiron Power and Pumping Plant near Loveland, CO


Commissioned in 1954, this 95mw plant has 3 turbines. [gem]

Two of the units generate power and the third unit is 8.5mw pumped storage to Carter Lake. It is part of the Colorado-Big Thompson Project that diverts water from the West Slope to the Colorado plains. It is one of over 100 structures that stretch over 250 miles. [power-technology]
I have not been able to determine the source of the water for the 2 main turbines.

Andy Michel posted 20 photos with the comment: "Got to tour Flatiron Power and Pumping Plant today [May 22, 2024] with our EPTC Class. Very cool tour and equipment."




















Wednesday, May 22, 2024

1816+1922,1996 Memorial Bridge over Connecticut River at Springfield, CT

(Archived Bridge Hunter; no Historic Bridges; HAERSatellite)

3. General view from west river bank, looking southeast - Hampden County Memorial Bridge, Spanning Connecticut River on Memorial Drive, Springfield, Hampden County, MA Photos from Survey HAER MA-114

"Significance: The Hampden County Memorial Bridge's main span is the longest concrete deck arch span in Massachusetts. The bridge is a finely-engineered example of a rare self-supporting arch rib reinforcement technique, derived from the Melan tradition. Once encased in concrete, the steel arch reinforcing truss acts as a partner with the concrete in bearing the dead load of the structure. Although the deck is supported on spandrel columns, they are concealed behind a fascia spandrel wall, conveying the Impression of a solid structure. The consulting architects, Haven & Hoyt, embellished the structure with artificial stone, notably in the four pylons of the main channel span." [HAER_data]

enr (pay count), Photo by John Phelan, License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY)

Photo by Doug Kerr via BridgeHunter
Kevin Lagasse posted
The Memorial Bridge over the Connecticut River looking north-ish. From the Springfield, MA side this past winter.

Hampden County Memorial Bridge looking west from Springfield, August 1922. Springfield viaduct in the foreground. 1816 covered wooden toll bridge upstream, in the process of deconstruction. A segment of railroad bridge is visible beyond. Courtesy of the Lyman and Merrie Wood Museum of Springfield History.
"The Connecticut’s soft riverbed precluded solid concrete and masonry structures, and exposed steel arches were deemed unpleasing....The bridge, designed in the Beaux-Arts style, boasted seven parabolic concreted rib arches on six piers and two abutments that spanned 1,200 feet [366m] across the river. A nine-span viaduct of 314 feet [96m] over railroad tracks on the Springfield (east) side formed the Springfield approach."

This shows the arched steel trusses that will be encased in concrete. And this is another example of how a derrick holding a pipe was used to place concrete.
HAER_data, p13

"Bridge construction. Concrete hoisting tower (130 feet) shown. Concrete was transported from mixing plant on West Springfield side along a temporary wood trestle 70 feet upstream. Courtesy of the Lyman and Merrie Wood Museum of Springfield History."
[This article describes the Melan system of using steel arches inside concrete.]

The Melan system significantly reduced the falsework because an arch truss was prefabricated as four segments, and then the truss could hold the forms for the concrete.
Arch erection in span 7, Springfield side. Courtesy of the Lyman and Merrie Wood Museum of Springfield History.
"A total of 10,500 pine piles, 20 to 40 feet in height and spaced 20 feet on center on hard clay, form the foundation for six river piers and two abutments....The arch span lengths vary from 110 to 209 feet; the span rises from 19.1 to 29.7 feet. Marked by four 80-foot beacon towers, the channel span is 176 feet in width and 40 feet above low water over 60 feet."
'The Melan system fell out of favor in part as steel became more expensive and less available. More so, a better understanding of cement and concrete technologies, composite behavior, and the development of uniform codes and construction methods moved structures towards more efficient and economical bar reinforcement. The system experienced a rebirth in the 1970s which continues in Japan and China, where self-supporting arches are used to construct bridge spans in mountainous regions.'

Three of the five arches are concentrated in the center to support the streetcar load. [StructureMag]
7. View from under deck of west span, showing floor system, looking east

The four ornamental pylons are navigation beacons.
Street View, Oct 2023

enr (pay count), Photo by Matt Putzel, License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY)
"A Midwest-style tornado struck the city in June 2011.  The tornado was one of the most powerful storms of its type to strike Massachusetts.  The Commonwealth does get hit by a few twisters annually, but typically they are weaker and short-lived storms.   This tornado's storm path was 37 miles long, touching down in Westfield and raking towns and forests to the east all the way to Sturbridge.  In Springfield, the damage path crossed a swath of the downtown, damaging or destroying hundreds of structures.
...Although much of Springfield was later pummeled, the bridge, itself, was not damaged.  A truck overturned in the wind, which was the extent of major impacts." It was an EF3 tornado.

Tuesday, May 21, 2024

I-295+I-76 Collapse of "Wall 22" in Philadelphia, PA, on Mar 25, 2021


Because NJDOT refused to pay $70,000 in a billion dollar Direct Connect Project to redraw the plans to use a different fill soil after the contractor flagged the planed sand fill as inadequate, NJDOT faces a $92m repair bill. Federal taxpayers are providing $74m to repair the NJDOT $70k savings. And the repair won't be done until 2028.
8:34 video @ 1:31


The I-295 traffic does not have to merge with the I-76+PA-42 traffic, but it does have to slow down to 35mph to negotiate some twisty ramp style roads.

I found just words, no maps, on NJDOT's website about the project. I-295 is supposed to have a new "mainline direct connect" bridge over 76+42, but I can't determine where that bridge would be. Most DOT's recognize that a picture (or color-coded map) is worth 1000 words. But not NJDOT.

Construction began in winter of 2013. [CourierPostOnline]

After I wrote the above, I came across tis 38:00 video.

Monday, May 20, 2024

1908,1964 I-84 Bulkeley Bridge over Connecticut River at Hartford, CT

(Archived Bridge Hunter; no Historic Bridges; Satellite)

I was shocked to see on Google Maps that this 100+ year old bridge is part of the Interstate highway system.

The 1,075.2' (328m) long bridge has the largest span of 119.1' (36m). [BridgeHunter]

"Constructed from over 100,000 cubic yards of grey and pink granite, each 10-ton block was cut to remarkable tolerances of within 3/8ths of an inch. Its nine spans were 1192 feet [363m] long in total. Its graceful stone arches spanned up to 119 feet [36m] each, longer than any others in the state. The bridge’s foundation averaged 50 [15m] to 60 feet [18m] in depth." [GribbleNation]

Bob Dover posted
The last large-scale, stone arch highway bridge constructed in the US was the Bulkeley Bridge in Hartford, Connecticut. Almost 1,200 feet long and crossing the Connecticut River on nine arches, the bridge was completed in 1908. Although newer concrete and steel technologies were available, the designers chose a bridge constructed of pink and gray granite blocks weighing ten tons each. The choice was made for aesthetic reasons, to provide an ornate, monumental bridge entering downtown Hartford.
I have placed a few photos of the bridge, including a zoomed-in photo of the plaque, onto

Street View, Aug 2011

This is the best photo I found that shows the stone construction of the bridge.
John Hseih, Jan 2019

I wonder if this is the only Interstate highway bridge that accommodates pedestrians. [Google search summary for clio]
Street View, Oct 2020
OnlyInYourState, 1 of several images
Construction started in 1903, and it opened in 1908 to much fanfare.

"The Bulkeley name comes from Morgan C. Bulkeley, who served as president of the bridge commission at the time. During his life, he functioned in many public service roles including Hartford Mayor, Connecticut Governor, and U.S. Senator. He also worked in the private sector as the longtime president of the Hartford-based Aetna Insurance Company. Moreover, Bulkeley became the first president of baseball’s National League. Indeed, he is the only man enshrined both in Connecticut’s Hall of Governors in Hartford and in Baseball’s Hall of Fame in Cooperstown. When he passed away in 1922, the town changed the name of the bridge from Hartford Bridge to Bulkeley Bridge to honor him." [clio]

It cost $3m dollars, which was a half-million more than the state capital. [GribbleNation]
That is worth $80m in 2020 dollars. [clio]

A blog that claims this is the world's largest stone arch bridge. Indeed, it is not as long as the Rockville Bridge, but it was built with more cubic yards of stone. Some comments suggest the Solkan Bridge as a competitor for size and age. But 1906 is not younger than 1908 nor is 721' (220m) longer than this bridge. But the Solkan Bridge does have a long arch span.

ConnecticutHistory, 1 of 3 photos of the construction of the foundations
This article focuses on the plight of the sand hogs.
This 1908 bridge replaced an 1818 wooden covered bridge that burned in 1895.