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View Full Version : More spill on the MVT's Wooden Bridge



RESTONTODC
05-23-2012, 10:46 AM
When I came through the MVT wooden bridge near the Theodore Roosevelt Island this morning, another cyclist was wiped out again and I stopped to check but I can't even walk on it with biking shoe. It's so slippery. I felt like I was in a ice rink. I'm wondering how many cyclists and pedestrians have fallen down here before. Can NPS replace the wood with non slip recycled composite decking material instead of wood?

I bet if this bridge is DC, we would see some frivolous lawsuits about it.

Here is the old thread.

http://bikearlingtonforum.com/showthread.php?1038-Took-a-spill

OneEighth
05-23-2012, 10:59 AM
Given that this is not a new problem, I am not sure I would agree with calling lawsuits related to injuries sustained because of negligence in addressing a recognized, hazardous situation frivolous.

Dirt
05-23-2012, 11:03 AM
I noticed this week (the hard way) that a gap has formed between two of the boards that make it very dangerous for cyclists coming down from Roosevelt Bridge and making a right turn onto the South-bound MVT. The gap is JUST wide enough to suck a 23mm tire into it. I didn't crash... I caught it and pulled my tire out. That could seriously damage someone though.

Those boardwalks are very scary. A few years back when a ton of people complained, they added more signs saying the boardwalks are slippery.

Honestly, I don't know what the solution is for that. The fake wood boards are not much better when wet in my view.

dasgeh
05-23-2012, 11:16 AM
Honestly, I don't know what the solution is for that. The fake wood boards are not much better when wet in my view.

I think the issue with wood is (1) it stays wet longer and (2) things grow on it. We have this problem on our deck at home - when it rains for a few days a week, then mildew (?) starts growing, and it's slippery all the time. I don't come through this area often, but was there on BTWD and noticed that the wooden bridge was just like our deck.

One solution is frequent (at least 2x a year, I think) power washing and treatment with an anti-growing stuff solution. I don't see NPS doing this, so the better solution would be a composite material.

Of course, my opinion is informed only by my research on our deck issues. I'm sure there are people who know more about this stuff, and they may have a better one.

OneEighth
05-23-2012, 11:30 AM
Seems to me that the boardwalk's supporting structure is sufficient to handle a something other than wood, hardy plank, or surfacing products similarly unsuitable in wet conditions. Not sure why pre-formed, reinforced concrete sections wouldn't work on the existing structure. After all, it doesn't have to be thick enough to accommodate vehicular traffic. May reduce maintenance costs over the long term as well.

KLizotte
05-23-2012, 11:39 AM
I think the issue with wood is (1) it stays wet longer and (2) things grow on it. We have this problem on our deck at home - when it rains for a few days a week, then mildew (?) starts growing, and it's slippery all the time. I don't come through this area often, but was there on BTWD and noticed that the wooden bridge was just like our deck.

One solution is frequent (at least 2x a year, I think) power washing and treatment with an anti-growing stuff solution. I don't see NPS doing this, so the better solution would be a composite material.

Of course, my opinion is informed only by my research on our deck issues. I'm sure there are people who know more about this stuff, and they may have a better one.

Because the boardwalk is over a river/wetland, I'm sure they won't be willing to use any sort of chemicals on the bridge. I do agree that trying to find a material that will impede mold growth would be a step in the right direction. Will all of the high tech materials out there, I can't believe there isn't a simple solution available. How about rubber covered boards?

jabberwocky
05-23-2012, 11:54 AM
Composite decking (trex, etc) is more slippery under normal conditions, but probably less so when wet. As noted above, it doesn't have the growth issues that normal wood does (which is what makes that wood super slick when wet). I have a wooden rear porch (ground level) that I ride on to get to my rear door. I've gone down a few times on it and have learned to be super careful when its wet. Its seriously like ice! You can barely walk on it.

I think the solution for that bridge is probably a good powerwashing and then some sort of epoxy-based non-slip coating. Not cheap, but much cheaper than replacing all that decking. It would need to be reapplied at least annually though, given the traffic volume there. Concrete or something would be a better solution, but would be a pretty major undertaking.

Dirt
05-23-2012, 12:04 PM
I'm going to duct tape a 1980's vintage beanbag chair to each hip every time I ride through there until it is fixed. ;)

dasgeh
05-23-2012, 12:22 PM
I'm going to duct tape a 1980's vintage beanbag chair to each hip every time I ride through there until it is fixed. ;)

The first time I read this, I thought it said you were going to cover the bridge in duct tape. That would be interesting...

KLizotte, good point about the chemicals. Apparently I left the green part of my brain at home today.

5555624
05-23-2012, 12:24 PM
I'm going to duct tape a 1980's vintage beanbag chair to each hip every time I ride through there until it is fixed. ;)

Just post the pics....

Dirt
05-23-2012, 12:54 PM
The first time I read this, I thought it said you were going to cover the bridge in duct tape. That would be interesting...
I thought about festooning the area with fluffy throw pillows, but that might be a bit much.

Yet again my posts are the opposite of helpful.

:D

consularrider
05-23-2012, 01:02 PM
I'm going to duct tape a 1980's vintage beanbag chair to each hip every time I ride through there until it is fixed. ;)

You'll be a Widette (http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.ikeafans.com/images/wordpress/uploads/2009/09/widettes-snl.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.ikeafans.com/home/henriksdal-now-fit-for-heftier-heinies/&h=301&w=434&sz=37&tbnid=b5Ppwqw6GDIzWM:&tbnh=87&tbnw=126&prev=/search%3Fq%3Dwidettes%2Bphoto%26tbm%3Disch%26tbo%3 Du&zoom=1&q=widettes+photo&usg=__B_WCqIrA6T3R91ypXxetYA15_IM=&hl=en&sa=X&ei=ySW9T_OkIsGMgwfI_uygDw&ved=0CBMQ9QEwAQ).

Dirt
05-23-2012, 01:18 PM
You'll be a Widette (http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.ikeafans.com/images/wordpress/uploads/2009/09/widettes-snl.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.ikeafans.com/home/henriksdal-now-fit-for-heftier-heinies/&h=301&w=434&sz=37&tbnid=b5Ppwqw6GDIzWM:&tbnh=87&tbnw=126&prev=/search%3Fq%3Dwidettes%2Bphoto%26tbm%3Disch%26tbo%3 Du&zoom=1&q=widettes+photo&usg=__B_WCqIrA6T3R91ypXxetYA15_IM=&hl=en&sa=X&ei=ySW9T_OkIsGMgwfI_uygDw&ved=0CBMQ9QEwAQ).
Goals are sooooo important to me. :D

creadinger
05-23-2012, 01:37 PM
I saw someone take a spill turning onto the 14th St bridge connector from the northbound MVT. I think he was just going a little too fast for the conditions and his tires slid out.

It doesn't have to be wood to be slippery. Moss and algae can grow on asphalt/concrete too. Shade and humidity are the biggest factors.

mrkenny83
05-23-2012, 02:08 PM
This is where I had my spill (discussed in the "On Your Left - Tales of Woe" post).

I now go really slowly on the bridge and have a bunch of "On your lefts" yelled at me..... what a full-circle moment!

baiskeli
05-24-2012, 09:38 AM
They should just mix paint with sand, or any of the many softer alternatives like this, (http://www.softsandrubber.com/) (that won't scrape too bad if you still fall) with paint and put a coat on every season.