Causeway delay explained

    PORT HAWKESBURY: A recent issue with the swing bridge left traffic backed up on both sides of the Canso Causeway.

      Andrew MacPherson, project engineer with Nova Scotia Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal, said the swing bridge was stuck in the open-for-sea traffic position for around 94 minutes on Sunday, June 25.

      MacPherson said opening or closing the swing bridge is a multi-step process which must be done in sequence.

      “One step can’t be complete until the last step was verified,” he said, noting a step in the process wasn’t registering as being complete, which accounted for the problem.

      “The rest of the process couldn’t be completed. We had to get somebody up there to look at it and make sure it was released and then we had to manually override it. We worked on it that night to see why it didn’t release, and I think it just had to do with some limit switches that were off.”

      MacPherson said the switches were readjusted and they’ve worked since.

      “With our new operating system, there are going to be some bugs like that, I think, that we’ll discover as it operates,” he said.

      When asked if he was aware of the situation causing any problems, MacPherson said he understands police needed to be called for a traffic matter on the Causeway.

      “I think a lady lost her car keys [on the Causeway] and RCMP had to direct traffic around until she found them,” he said.

      As for how far back traffic was lined-up, MacPherson said it was backed up to the railroad overpass in Auld’s Cove. He said he heard reports of traffic being backed up to the  A&W  resturant on the Cape Breton side.

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    Antigonish native Matt Draper has been a photographer, reporter and columnist for The Reporter since 2003.