(Spanish Wells, Eleuthera, The Bahamas) Shortly after midday on Wednesday, May 6th, 2020 residents in Spanish Wells reported the collapse of the Roderick Newton Higgs bridge, which connects the community of Spanish Wells on St. George’s Cay to Russell Island in North Eleuthera.
Officials confirmed that two vehicles were on the bridge at the time of collapse (a large dump truck and a golf cart), with 3 occupants between the two vehicles. All occupants were said to have appeared and stated to be without injury. No swimmers, pedestrians or boaters were involved with the incident.
On one resident’s live social media broadcast capturing the aftermath, local residents could be seen attempting to remove the large dump truck from the center of the collapsed bridge.
The large dump truck, after the collaboration of a number of community members, was successfully removed from the center of the bridge at about 2:30pm on Wednesday afternoon.
The Hon. Desmond Bannister, Minister of Public Works accompanied by colleagues within his Ministry, were in Spanish Wells, North Eleuthera, nine months ago, on July 22nd, 2019, for the signing of a $2.8 million contract, awarded to Waugh Construction (Bahamas), for the replacement of the Roderick Newton Higgs bridge, which has not advanced to-date.
The bridge, at that time was described as very important, having accommodated the growth and expansion of Spanish Wells in recent years. Russell Island, confirmed Chief Local Government Councilor, Mr. Robert Roberts, has 200 homes and businesses, and also hosts the St. George’s Cay Power Company, as well as the community’s landfill site.
The current bridge was installed 28 years ago, in 1992, as a temporary fixture to replace the one destroyed after the passage of hurricane Andrew.
Authorities say an investigation is ongoing into the collapse of the bridge.
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