B’ham Police react to I-59/20 bridge opening

Finished 59/20 bridges will speed up response time

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Birmingham Police Chief Patrick Smith says his department will be just as glad as everyone else to see the I-59/20 bridges open again.

The bridges have been shut down for a year, which means many drivers have had to take different routes. This includes our police officers.

First responders say the bridge closure has increased response time to calls but have not significantly impacted their arrival time. Chief Smith says more traffic has meant traffic jams and traffic accidents for side streets. This means his officers have to cover them.

“We have had to sometimes place police officers at certain intersections to help with gridlock and traffic laws have to be enforced,” Smith says.

Like everyone else, the Chief is looking forward to a return to normalcy and a chance for his officers to stay out on other beats.

ALDOT says the bridges will be open by next Wednesday after a year-long construction project. A ceremony is expected for the eventual opening of the bridges, whether it be before next week or not remains to be seen.

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