Repairs underway for Mathews Bridge

"It should take days, not months that we should get this back into shape."

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - If the Mathews Bridge is remotely close to anywhere on your trip to work or school this morning remember to give yourself some extra time.

The bridge is still closed after a Navy transport ship hit it Thursday afternoon.

Although there was warning about traffic Sunday, fortunately, the feared gridlock situation was avoided for Jags fans going to the game. Fans say it was smooth sailing getting to Everbank Field and the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office said it's because of the multiple agencies working together.

"It says that we work well together, it says that before anything ever happens were already planning for events like this. We're already helping each other and sharing information which is very important," sais Lieutenant Deloris Patterson with JSO.

Department of transportation officials worked through the weekend pouring over a full data assessment of the bridge.

"Right now we don't have a good feel for the number of days. But it should be days and not months that we should be able to get this back into shape," said Engineer Will Watts.

The bridge was already an active construction project, crews have been working on the Mathews Bridge for a couple of years now. Because of that, bridge engineers were able to get the contractor out quickly to do things like uncover the detour signs that were already up around town and contact other people who will need to be involved in getting the bridge repaired and eventually re-opened.

"Some things hanging there we do have utilities on the bridge. Those companies have been notified that, 'hey you have damage to your utility, at this time you cannot get on the bridge and repair it but note that we know and at some point you will need to be up there,'" said a Department of Transportation worker.

JSO is reiterating that they already have contingency plans in place should a bridge go down and they're implementing those plans to avoid this becoming a major problem.

If you're trying to get downtown during the bridge closure from Arlington and the beaches, take the Cesery exit off Arlington Expressway to University Boulevard, and then onto the Hart Bridge. 

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