BEAVER, Ark. (KNWA) – A Northwest Arkansas city is begging for changes to be made after drivers keep ignoring signs displayed at a potentially dangerous bridge.
A viral Facebook video of a tour bus crossing a suspension bridge is sparking controversy.
“I moved here and took one look at that bridge and I said that is mighty fine,” says Buzz Peine, a resident of Beaver.
Some call it the Golden Gate Bridge of Arkansas.
“It’s like a wave when people cross..”
The prized structure off Highway 187 caught attention over the weekend after a video was posted.
The video shows a 35-ton charter bus crossing the bridge which you can see clearly buckling.
Here at the start of the bridge, there is a clear sign that states the weight limit is 10 tons.. but the people of Beaver tell me these types of incidents happen all the time.
“It’s a one way, wooden bridge on a state highway,” says Buzz.
The Arkansas Department of Transportation was out Monday inspecting the bridge during a routine maintenance check.
Danny Straessle says his workers just happened to be in the right place at the right time.
“Fortunately, we had a bridge crew in place doing some regular maintenance work on this bridge, so they were there last week. They remain up there just doing regular routine maintenance like replacing the wood planks that comprise the bridge deck over there,” said Straessle.
After almost 70 years in service, ArDOT says the bridge is up to par.
And right now there are not one, but two warnings of the weight limit before you cross.
“I mean there are 62 different signs between when you enter the city and when you get to bridge. And they still don’t notice it,” says Roger Shoffit who also lives in Beaver.
Longtime Beaver resident Roger Shoffit has no fear when driving over the bridge.
But he’s nervous the increased traffic and headlines over the years will take the bridge away from the small Arkansas town.
“It’s just dear to a lot of people’s hearts here in the county and the city. It’s all a part of the draw here,” says Shoffit.
The Arkansas Department of Transportation says the bus in the video has no definite markings and no license plate – a fact which is being looked into by the Arkansas Highway Police.