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Bay Bridge’s New Eastern Span Safer In Earthquake Than Old Bridge, Say Engineers

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A view of the roadway on the new Bay Bridge eastern span. (CBS)

A view of the roadway on the new Bay Bridge eastern span. (CBS)

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SAN FRANCISCO (CBS/AP) — Engineers say the new span of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge would be able to handle a large earthquake much better than its aging counterpart which was damaged by the Loma Prieta temblor in 1989.

The analysis from three agencies overseeing the Bay Bridge construction shows the new span would be able to withstand shaking from a major quake. The information was presented to Bay Area lawmakers who requested a briefing in the wake of public concerns about the $6.4 billion span’s seismic safety.

More than 30 seismic safety rods broke after being tightened in March, forcing officials to scramble to repair the damage. The span is scheduled to open Labor Day weekend, but a decision will be made next month about whether the opening will be delayed.

(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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