Tuesday, August 25, 2015

I-24 over Ohio River, Revisited

20150820,21 4199cp 12:35:28
While driving to Kentucky, I had planned on getting off I-57 at the Metropolis exit. I was glad I did because traffic was backed up on I-24 to that exit. Once again, the I-24 bridge over the Ohio River had lane restrictions. Not only was traffic reduced to one lane; that lane was moving quite slowly. In the pictures above and below, I added a line above the cab of a Fed Ex truck because it was pulling two trailers and thus it is very distinctive in the pictures. It took 20 seconds to move 2.5 spans.

Many times in Illinois they will place the barrels to restrict the lane usage but when you finally get to drive through the construction zone, you not only don't see anybody working, sometimes you don't even see any equipment. I was not curious enough to see how many people were actually working on the bridge to go through the I-24 traffic. I used the  Blue Hummer Bridge to get to Kentucky. I had my wife take a picture on the bridge because this is the first time I have seen traffic on it. And it is probably the first time in my life that I was not keeping up with the flow of the traffic. I was a lot closer to the car ahead of me when we started across the bridge. But I was not obstructing traffic because the car behind me was going even slower.

In my original posting for this bridge,  I noted that barge traffic in both directions used the south navigation channel. On the day I took these pictures, barge traffic was using the north channel. I have no clue what influences a captain's choice of which arch bridge to go under. (Update: I have seen evidence that Lock and Dam #52 is still operational. During today's visit, they had to use the lock, which is on the north side of the river. During my previous visits the wickets were down so they had the option of using the south side of the river.)

I then put on the telephoto lens to get close up pictures. In the background of the middle picture you can see the Blue Hummer Bridge.

All of these pictures were taken from the Fort Massac State Park. When I first arrived, I could get only a fraction of the bridge with my wide-angle setting (18mm). Then I spotted a pier by a loading ramp. I was going to note the location of the pier in a Goggle satallite image, but it did not have the pier. So I switched to FlashEarth. All of the above pictures were taken from that pier. I then took pictures downstream and of the fort from the pier. While I was taking pictures, my wife went to check out the fort. But she was advised that it was closed because a fugitive was loose in the area. There is a bend in the river so that you can't see the railroad bridge in the downstream view.

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