Rapps Dam Road bridge

The detour for motorists around the closed Rapps Dam Bridge.

EAST PIKELAND — The historic Rapps Dam Road Covered Bridge over French Creek in East Pikeland Township is closed indefinitely due to structural damage caused by an oversized vehicle early Saturday morning, July 24, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation announced.

During the bridge closure, motorists are advised to follow the posted detour of Route 113 (Kimberton Road) and Route 23 (Nutt Road/Schuylkill Road).

Bridge engineers are examining the extent of the structural damage and will develop a plan to repair the covered bridge.

The Rapps Dam Road Covered Bridge over French Creek was originally built in 1866 and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The bridge is 106 feet long and 14 feet wide. The bridge carried an average of 3,600 vehicles a day.

PennDOT has rehabilitated the historic covered bridge three times since 2011. The most recent repair work finished in April 2018 following a vehicular crash in March 2018.

In fall 2015, PennDOT rehabilitated the historic covered bridge after it was severely damaged by a tractor trailer in April 2014. The contractor restored the Burr Arch truss, installed new ceiling joists and braces, and replaced wooden cross members on the roof.

In fall 2011, PennDOT completed a rehabilitation project on the bridge by removing and replacing its deteriorated cedar shake roof, redwood siding and timber decking. Crews also replaced four steel beams supporting the bridge deck and repaired the structure’s stone abutments and wing walls.

Motorists can check conditions on more than 40,000 roadway miles by visiting www.511PA.com. 511PA, which is free and available 24 hours a day, provides traffic delay warnings, weather forecasts, traffic speed information and access to more than 1,000 traffic cameras.

For a complete list of construction projects impacting state-owned highways in Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties, visit www.penndot.gov/District6TrafficBulletin.

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