Wednesday, May 17th, 2017

WORK TO BE DONE ON BOTH JEFFERSON BRIDGES STARTING EARLY SUMMER

Photo shows County Bridge #820 -- Brady Road bridge

County Bridge #820 — Brady Road bridge

Installation of boating navigation lights on two Lake Hopatcong bridges in Jefferson will begin in late June after approval of the project by the Morris County Board of Freeholders, with work expected to start by late June.

The Freeholders have awarded a bid contract for $136,545 to Fai-Gon Electric Inc. of Piscataway to install safety lights on county bridges over Espanong Road and Brady Road in Jefferson. Project design was done by Boswell Engineering.

There are no existing lights on the two bridges, which cross over busy navigable waters, to alert boaters to the oncoming structures. Currently, the county employs “chevrons” or object markers and reflectorized signs attached to the bridge.

photo of County Bridge #819 - Espanaong Road Bridge

County Bridge #819 – Espanong Road Bridge

The state Department of Transportation, in a review of bridges, advised the county to upgrade the reflectors with full lighting to meet U.S. Coast Guard regulations. These are the only two bridges in the county requiring such lighting.

“Just as we do with the county’s road network, it is important to maintain and upgrade our bridge system to ensure safe navigable waters, especially on busy Lake Hopatcong” said Freeholder John Cesaro, the county governing board’s public works liaison.

The lighting project should not impede the flow of boat traffic at either bridge. There might some slight motoring delays on the bridges when work is done on top of the decks.

Morris County also maintains structures over the Pequannock , Pompton and Passaic Rivers but these are “low flow” channels that are not navigable during normal flow conditions, and do not require lighting. Only crafts such as rafts, canoes or kayaks can navigate them.

Also, the County maintains the two structures carrying motor vehicle traffic on Route over a tributary to the Boonton Reservoir in Boonton and Parsippany. However, navigation by crafts is not allowed on tributary of the Rockaway River.