The pistols are not actual pistols. They're just pieces of iron shaped like pistols. I drive over this bridge twice a day on my way to work in Lafayette and on my way home to Sulphur. I have totaled a car on this bridge. An 18 wheeler tire came off and because the bridge is so narrow, I had no where to bail out. I had to eat it and it ripped the entire undercarriage of my car apart. I can assure you, this bridge is a deathtrap. It's also unstable, no matter what LA DOD says. They know that it is structurally unsound as well. What few people realize is that there is absolutely no way to build a new bridge on the present location. In fact, they can't even do much to improve the Westlake exit. Unbeknownst to most, including the people that live in this area, is that the boggy/marshy area to the northwest of the bridge contains a toxic stew of vinyl chloride and polychlorinated biphenyl and God knows what else. If they drive new bridge pilings into this area, they could release these nasty things into the groundwater. They can't build further north because SASOL if expanding their gas plant in that area. They can't build further south because Isle of Capri is there. Catch 22.
I highly doubt anyone would waste 10,000 Civil War pistols on a bridge in 1950. Maybe they are modeled after Civil War pistols, which is neat, but not historic in itself. Though it does add character to the bridge.
THIS BRIDGE MAY HAVE BEEN COMPLETED IN 1952, HOWEVER, MY FATHER, ATWILL REED "HUTCH" HUTCHINGS WAS A FOREMAN ON THIS BRIDGE FOR KANSAS CITY BRIDGE CO. THEY BUILT THE SUB STRUCTURES, (CONCRETE PIERS).
THEY STARTED THIS IN 1948. THE REASON I KNOW THIS IS, I STARTED THE FIRST GRADE IN LAKE CHARLES, ALSO THE SECOND GRADE.
SEE ATTACHED PHOTO OF ATWILL HUTCHINGS.
THANKS, ROBERT REED HUTCHINGS
I have traveled this bridge many times since I was a young child and although the facts lead you to believe that the bridge is structurally unstable, there is historical value associated with the bridge. If you look at the detail of this bridge carefully, you will notice pistols lining the bridge on either side. Over 10,000 pistols have been carefully crossed to provide a design unique to this bridge, and from my understanding the pistols have been dated back to the civil war. To suggest that this landmark be destroyed is in my opinion completely irrational. The bridge can be renovated to provide structural stability. To demolish this piece of history and remarkable design will be a true loss to the people of Louisiana and all traveling this route.
Calcasieu River 1-10 bridge and I-210. NO LIGHTS dark at night.
I have been over bridges all over the USA, Mexico, and Europe, they all have good lighting. There is no excuse.
Drove over this bridge on my way to Houston today... Street Views don't do justice to how steep this bridge is.
Claudia, the information about all of the bridges on this site comes from a federal database known as the National Bridge Inventory. The information is readily available. Here is the rest of the current data about this bridge:
Place Name: Lake Charles, Louisiana
NBI Structure Number: 071004509127691
Facility Carried: I0010
Feature Intersected: CALCASIEU RIVER, RR, STS
Location: I-10 OVER LA 378
Year Built: 1952
This bridge is Structurally Deficient
Owned and maintained by: State Highway Agency
Functional Classification: Urban Principal Arterial - Interstate
Service On Bridge: Highway
Service Under Bridge: Highway-waterway-railroad
Lanes On Structure: 4
Lanes Under Structure: 8
Structure Length: 2013.8 m
Bridge Roadway Width: 16 m
Operating Rating: 44.1 Metric Tons
Navigation Vertical Clearance: 41.1 m
Minimum Vertical Underclearance: 5.61 m over Highway
Number of Spans in Main Unit: 7 Spans
Material Design: Steel continuous
Design Construction: Truss - Thru
Number of Approach Spans: 90
Approach Material Design: Steel
Approach Design Construction: Stringer/Multi-beam or Girder
Scour: Correctional countermeasures installed, no longer scour critical
Bridge Railing: Does not meet currently acceptable standards.
Structural Evaluation: Meets minimum tolerable limits to be left in place as is
Water Adequacy Evaluation: Equal to present desirable criteria
Estimated Total Improvement Project Cost: $33,754,000
Year of Project Cost Estimate: 2008
Average Daily Traffic: 51,300
Year of Average Daily Traffic: 2007
Sufficiency Rating: 24.9 %
For David backlin: I would like to know the references from which you got this information to know how valid this scary information is. I cross this bridge alot so I'm concerned. Thanks
They're not the greatest quality,but here are some old images of the I-10 Calcasieu River bridge I took back in the winter of '07.To say this bridge is narrow would be an understatement...hopefully the replacement will be avast improvement over it but won't be a UCEB.
How do I find the drawings of the various new approachs,(interchanges) into Westlake that will show the New I-10 Bridge as well as the present bridge? These use to be on this site. I live in Westlake and would like to again be able to view them.---Thanks. Lee Roberts.