A replacement span for Eggners Ferry Bridge was lifted into place Tuesday after being transported 30 miles Monday through Lake Barkley and Kentucky Lake.

The 322-foot span was assembled at the Eddyville Riverport and began its journey to the bridge site around 12:30 p.m. Monday. It was transported using a three-barge flotilla, which also carried two cranes needed to move the span once it arrived.

Large crowds of people gathered along the shoreline Monday and Tuesday to watch the work. The span was lifted into place at 2:42 p.m. Tuesday.

Engineers will now begin installing reinforcing steel and forms so a concrete deck can be poured on the structure in the next 12 days, according to a news release from the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet.

The bridge has been closed since Jan. 26 when an 8,200-ton cargo ship crashed into it and took out a large section of the bridge.

Hall Contracting of Louisville was awarded a $7 million emergency contract to replace the span by Memorial Day, May 28. The company faces a $50,000 penalty per day for missing the deadline.

Keith Todd, spokesman for the KYTC, said it will probably be a week before they know if the repairs will be complete before the company’s deadline. He said the contractor hasn’t indicated there will be any delays and is optimistic workers can finish the project in time.

“I think these guys are going to work 24-7 for them to get it done,” Todd said.

REACH DENNIS O’NEIL at 270-887-3237 or doneil@kentuckynewera.com.

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