The Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) today announced it has closed the Arnold Mills Bridge in Cumberland. This decision was prompted by the findings of a recent bridge inspection. The bridge serves local traffic on rural Sneech Pond Road, off Nate Whipple Highway.
The bridge has been closed to vehicular traffic since 2009 because of deterioration in its structural steel components. It was kept open for pedestrian use only.
The most recent inspection found continued steel deterioration, requiring RIDOT to close the bridge to all users. RIDOT's comprehensive bridge inspection protocols require a thorough inspection of all structurally deficient bridges every year. Should a finding result in a change in conditions that create a safety hazard, RIDOT will move immediately to restrict or prohibit travel over a bridge.
This bridge is included in RIDOT's 10-year plan for improvements, beginning work in 2023. RIDOT's bridge program utilizes an asset-management driven approach to identify and schedule repairs and bridge replacement projects while considering many factors, including the bridge's condition and the volume of traffic that uses it. The bridge was built in 1886 and reconstructed in 1985. .