Heavier truck loads aren't to cross the Smithland Bridge beginning today.

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) announced a reduction in the load limit on the bridge on U.S. 60. The load limit came about from a study that showed the deterioration of the center stringer on the bridge, likely worsened by overweight trucks crossing the bridge.

The bridge is on the north edge of Smithland in Livingston County and spans the Cumberland River. The bridge carries about 3,500 vehicles on an average day.

The new load limits on the bridge are 17 tons for Class 1 vehicles (6,000 pounds or less), 18 tons for Class 2 vehicles (6,000 to 10,00 pounds), 20 tons for Type 3 vehicles (10,000-14,000 pounds), 32 tons for Class 4 vehicles (14,000-16,000 pounds), 22 tons for single-unit vehicles with five axles, 22 tons for single-unit vehicles with six axles and 24 tons for single-unit vehicle with seven or more axles.

The new load rating represents a 3- to 8-ton reduction for most truck classes. The load rating for all bridge structures is posted at the bridge end.

KYTC District 1 Chief Engineer Kyle Poat noted that the engineering staff is working on a repair plan that could restore the current bridge load rating. Truckers are reminded to obey the posted weight limits to avoid adding stress to the bridge. KYTC will provide an update once a repair plan is completed and repair work scheduled.

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