Hundreds Turn Out for Blanchette Bridge Blast

St. Charles County Area Engineer Tom Evers said blast was successful with only superficial damage to one of the piers.

Contractors for the Missouri Department of Transportation blasted the westbound span of the Blanchette Bridge Tuesday morning while a crowd of hundreds watched from the riverfront in St. Charles. 

The steel in the top of the bridge was blasted while the piers will be rehabbed. St. Charles County Area Engineer Tom Evers said it appeared one center piers had superficial damage to it. 

Crews have 24 hours to remove the section closest to St. Louis County from the river and 48 hours to remove the rest of the steel. 

Crowds gathered on the riverfront near Bishop's Landing wondered what would happen to the birds during the blast. 

"We set charges to scare the fish away before we do the real blast," Evers said. "We do environmental screenings of the project to make sure there are no endangered animals living in or under or on the bridge." 

As for the birds, it's possible some pidgeon's lives were lost, Evers said. "You can't keep them all off the bridge all at one time," he said. 

Debbie Koch, of Hazelwood, said the blast was "awesome." She came out with her four grandchildren and took video to send to grandpa at work. 

"That was better than I thought," Koch said. "I wasn't expecting to see so much smoke and colors. That was very pretty." 

You might be interested in these other stories:

  • Blanchette Bridge Imploded
  • Directions for Getting to Downtown St. Charles During Blanchette Bridge Closure

Heidi L. December 04, 2012 at 06:39 PM
Great Photos!
Steve Pokin December 04, 2012 at 07:52 PM
Great job on the photos, Kalen!
Kalen Ponche December 04, 2012 at 08:47 PM
Thanks! It was a pretty great explosion!
Joe Koncz December 04, 2012 at 09:21 PM
Sorry I missed it . It probably was a real blast?
Jenn Cloud December 06, 2012 at 03:51 PM
I tried to upload my video from up at the Heart of St. Charles here but not sure if it submitted or not...it's also posted it on my site at http://youngfreestlouis.com/blog/blanchette-bridge-explosion-and-demolition-st-louis-mo.html & I made a handy-dandy bonus .gif of it, too! ;) Great article and pics, thanks for sharing!


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