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Multi-Car Accidents Reported on Icy L.B. Bridge

Long Beach Bridge. (Credit: Joe Kellard)
Long Beach Bridge. (Credit: Joe Kellard)

This story was updated at 7:45 p.m. on 12.8.13.

The Long Beach Bridge was temporarily closed Sunday evening after multiple accidents were reported due to icy conditions on the Nassau County-owned structure that connects the city to Island Park.

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Nassau County police sent a media alert at 6:13 p.m. Sunday announcing that the bridge was closed in both directions “due to icy conditions.” At 8:35 p.m., police announced that the bridge had reopened in both directions.

While Nassau County police did not respond to a request for information about the bridge's closure and reported multiple-car accidents on Sunday, the Long Beach Police Department indicated the accident occurred while stormy weather rolled through the barrier island early Sunday evening.

“I'm told they closed it due to multiple accidents caused by an icing condition,” Lt. Eric Cregeen, an LBPD spokesman, told Patch.

Cregeen noted that the city’s Department of Public Works responded to the scene at about 8 p.m. and put sand down on the icy bridge to make the roadway safer so that it could be reopened to traffic.

County Leg. Denise Ford (R-Long Beach) told Patch that she was deeply concerned about the bridge closure and asked the county's public works department for details about it. 

“This is extremely critical as we do not have an emergency room on the barrier island and rely on the bridge remaining open, especially for emergencies," Ford said. 
Brendan December 09, 2013 at 12:58 PM
Probably also caused by morons driving too fast for road conditions.
Jack December 09, 2013 at 11:45 PM
It was known well in advance that a ice/snow storm was approaching, so why wasn't preventive sanding placed on the bridge?
Sent from my Lear Jet December 10, 2013 at 08:26 AM
Jack is right. Why didn't the same thing happen on the Marine Parkway, Cross bay, Atlantic Beach and Loop Parkway bridges? This only happens on Long Beach Bridge. City of LB trucks sand and salt are no more than 500 feet from the bridge. The fact that its a Nassau County bridge is meaningless in an emergency--you have the sand, salt and trucks right there. Think outside the box! Get out of the ruts! The City of LB is the only one with employees and officials this stupid!
Long Beach Lou December 10, 2013 at 08:59 AM
The City of Long Beach sure was quick to take credit for taking care of the bridge after the fact. Here is their post on Facebook: The Long Beach bridge has been closed temporarily by Nassau County because it was unsafe due to the fact that Nassau County has not deployed crews to the bridge this evening. Going above and beyond, the City's public works crews are now sanding the bridge, which is under the jurisdiction of Nassau County. We hope and expect that in the future Nassau County will respond more rapidly.
BSM December 10, 2013 at 03:29 PM
So, critical geniuses, consider this. We are paying taxes to Nassau Cty to maintain the bridge, including sanding and snow removal. Our City budgets for whatever amount of sanding supplies and manpower to maintain the streets we are responsible for. Do we get reimbursed by NC? Or will this become an ongoing assumption, LB will take care of the bridge because they're closer? Will we be reimbursed by NC? Joe Blow comes flying over the bridge too fast and hits an icy spot on the bridge LB has sanded. He crashes and like all good citizens the first call he makes is to his lawyer......to sue LB for improperly maintaining the bridge. Nassau dropped the ball. LB picked it up this time, but it should not become a habit.
Sent from my Lear Jet December 10, 2013 at 04:39 PM
Are you saying that we are better off if nobody sands the bridge, because if the bridge goes unsanded, and there are accidents the City of LB will not be sued? YEAH RIGHT. Bridge decks freeze first, many bridges have warning signs that say exactly that. 30+ years ago I came home to LB the bridge was iced over and closed. I drove back through IP, Oceanside, East Rockaway, the 5 towns and crossed the Atlantic Beach Bridge. It was sanded and salted and open for all. I checked when I got home, the LB Bridge was still closed. With weather forecasts like we have now, the City of LB should have 3 trucks with spreaders already loaded at the city Garage. The minute the bridge begins to freeze, the three trucks drive over the northbound bridge side by side, make a U turn in Island Park and return over the southbound bridge spreading sand/salt. Problem solved. What the hell is so difficult? This is a problem thats over 30 years old people. Bridges freeze FIRST.
nepheshim December 10, 2013 at 08:12 PM
This is OUTRAGEOUS!!!!!!! As Jack said, didn't they know about the weather before hand? Why wasn't this done? Why did it take until 8pm to sand the bridge when it was closed at 6:13???? About a month ago there was a heavy rain. It wasn't a hurricane. It wasn't a tropical storm. It was a heavy rain. The entire East end was flooded at evening rush hour and almost impassible. My car took days to dry out - -shades of Sandy when I did lose a car. Why should this happen? Slant the road, make gutters and clear the sewers. WTF is going on? Who is minding the store? Apparently no one - they only know how to take from the cash register.
nepheshim December 10, 2013 at 08:18 PM
The bridge is vital to all of our well being. It is only one of three ways off or on the Island and one of those ways is a long way from anything (the loop). In a life and death emergency every second counts. But we shouldn't even have to be inconvenienced like that. Did any other bridges close? I don't think so. A little dinky bridge like ours and they can't even manage it. Sad.
nepheshim December 10, 2013 at 08:20 PM
Harvey, I'd say you're cookin' but I guess I have to say you're bakin' - - - Right On!!!!!
nepheshim December 10, 2013 at 08:22 PM
To the guy talking about who should pay - - how much does sand cost? We have a whole beach full. We pay enough! Where are the services?
nepheshim December 10, 2013 at 08:23 PM
Lou, Pass the blame and take the credit, an old political and supervisory trick or a better word would be bullshit tactic.
nepheshim December 10, 2013 at 08:28 PM
Re: Who should sand the bridge We should not have to depend on Nassau co. for something so vital to us. It also sounds like this bridge is a political football. LB should agitate to get jurisdiction for the bridge - - wrest it away from the county and an increase in budget to go with it - -then they can sand it, salt it and even pepper it.
moe December 10, 2013 at 11:01 PM
Behind the scenes, this is probably just another "pissing contest" between County Republicans and City Democrats, who put their own power ahead of the safety of their residents. And another time we should all be grateful we weren't in the back of an ambulance hoping to "race" across the bridge to South Nassau.
Eddie December 11, 2013 at 07:16 PM
Long Beach City can't just "sand the bridge," as you would like them to do. It's not their property. That's how it works. They have as much right sanding it as you do. Write to your County Executive.
nepheshim December 11, 2013 at 09:21 PM
we don't care who salts or sands it as long as it is done and the LB city gov't should press the county to do it as they represent us and our interests and live here as well. This is also why I stated earlier that the city of LB should find a way to get jurisdiction over the bridge so that something so vital to us in not in the hands of others who are not affected and may not care. Further as Harvey stated much earlier, why were the other Nassau bridges ok? This is why we can't rely on the county, when it's "our" bridge (attached to our island). I believe this is a political contest as Moe stated, that is why it was neglected and that is why WE need the control.
nepheshim December 11, 2013 at 09:22 PM
It is UNACCEPTABLE that it should be closed and also unacceptable that it took two hours to be sanded and longer to be re-opened.
nepheshim December 11, 2013 at 09:24 PM
what about people on a bus - should they sit on the bus for two and a half hours?
nepheshim December 11, 2013 at 09:27 PM
to the person saying write to the County executive, NO! write to the Long Beach City Council as they represent you more directly and tell them to pressure the county - they have more clout than you do. Also tell them to get jurisdiction or control over this bridge as it is too risky to leave in the hands of others.
Sent from my Lear Jet December 11, 2013 at 10:31 PM
Eddie made this comment on this subject (he appears from his posts to be an anonymous damage control/apologist for the city administration) eddie also calls people names and says they work in cubicles when disagreed with: Eddie commented on the article "Multi-Car Accidents Reported on Icy L.B. Bridge "Long Beach City can't just "sand the bridge," as you would like them to do. It's not their property. That's how it works. They have as much right sanding it as you do. Write to your County Executive."-----Lou previously posted: ---- Long Beach Lou December 10, 2013 at 08:59 AM The City of Long Beach sure was quick to take credit for taking care of the bridge after the fact. Here is their post on Facebook: The Long Beach bridge has been closed temporarily by Nassau County because it was unsafe due to the fact that Nassau County has not deployed crews to the bridge this evening. Going above and beyond, the City's public works crews are now sanding the bridge, which is under the jurisdiction of Nassau County. We hope and expect that in the future Nassau County will respond more rapidly. So I ask eddie: If the City of LB "can't just sand the bridge" (quote from eddie) How is it that they they boast on facebook that they DID do it , albeit two+ hours late. Eddie needs to get his facts straight from whomever it is that pulls the strings in his puppet show.
moe December 12, 2013 at 02:00 AM
A lot of politics must have gone on behind the scenes in those two hours. The bridge should have been sanded *before* the accidents, and that was the responsibility of Nassau County. As for who to write to, the Republican County Exec couldn't care less about what the LB Dems say. I think this shows again how there are just too many layers of Government on Long Island. And absolutely no cooperation, outright animosity. This bridge tragedy sounds more like North Korean tanks crossing into South Korea than Long Beach trucks sanding into Island Park. I heard two people ask today, what's the benefit of Long Beach being a "city" any more? So many municipalities seem better run as "Incorporated Villages" or whatever. The Hospital was the biggest employer in the City. Who's going to be the financial base now, the Allegria? So many questions here go back decades- where *does* all the money from beach admissions go? This bridge tragedy is another example of politicians putting their careers ahead of peoples' lives, leaving important decisions in the hands of bureaucrats. Sad to say, but I think Eddie's posts are 100% correct. To see how poorly Long Beach gets along with its neighbors, just take a 1 block ride south on Nevada from Park. It looks like Beirut paving, straddling the "border" of LB and Hempstead.
Eddie December 12, 2013 at 12:08 PM
Thanks Moe. Jurisdictional matters don't always go well. And yes, I'm sure that there were some two hours of phone calls made before the command decision was made to sand the bridge. Believe it or not, bridge sand and street sand are different. Bridges are sanded without salt, because salt destroys the steel superstructure. Streets are generally conditioned with a mix of salt and sand. The salt melts ice and doesn't make a mess. While Harvey obviously isn't one of my fans, he also doesn't know much about public administration and the bureaucracies that run our political subdivisions. Or about roadway sand for that matter.
Sent from my Lear Jet December 12, 2013 at 01:22 PM
Eddie: Please point out where I showed that I "obviously" don't know the difference between beach sand and the sand used on roadways. It's OK if you Ask your string puller for help, and since you are indeed the spokesmen for the mandarins in LB City Hall why be bashful?? You should be proud of yourself what with your superior knowledge of public administration and sand let all of us know who you actually are.
Eddie December 12, 2013 at 02:01 PM
We know you are Gordon. Right?
Sent from my Lear Jet December 12, 2013 at 02:36 PM
As usual, you were asked to show how how I didn't know the difference between beach sand and road sand and your answer is: "you are Gordon. Right?" You should ask your string puller puppet boy.
Laura December 12, 2013 at 03:23 PM
Shut up Gorden Tepper. Back to your cubicle and suck some more liberal ass. How dare you criticize people who speak the truth you little whining asswipe.
Sent from my Lear Jet December 12, 2013 at 05:45 PM
Readers of PATCH: This is the administration's spokespuppets idea of intelligent discourse about the iced up bridge not being sanded/salted till 2+ hours late, when it was closed because of ice. Other's write of people not having access to the only nearby hospital, and suggest entirely workable ideas to prevent this perilous situation from happening again. The official spokespuppets, in the way of reply, engage in name calling. How much ice does name calling remove from bridges??
moe December 12, 2013 at 06:31 PM
@harvey- I would also assume the LB trucks were filled with "road salt" since the trucks are used to salt roads. As for Eddie, he was totally against the Dems in this election. I am a Democrat and we've had many "disagreements" in Patch over the months. But I respect what he writes because he obviously cares a lot about Long Beach and knows a lot about our area, too.
Eddie December 12, 2013 at 06:49 PM
Thanks Moe. I offer the same respect to you. Wile I'm certainly no spokesperson for anyone -- certainly not the Democrats running this city -- I'll give them credit where it is due. I believe they are trying hard to do the right thing. They stepped in and salted the bridge when the county failed to. What I was expressing was the complexities of what seems to many to be a simple matter of dropping salt. From both an engineering and political point of view, operating a city is far more complex than most can reason, and much of it is simply necessary nonsense.
nepheshim December 13, 2013 at 09:40 PM
I agree 100% with Harvey and Moe. Eddie's focus on technical details is not relevant to the discussion at hand, the point of which, is that more efficiency and concern need to be exercised so that the bridge does not close or if an unavoidable accident does occur it can be re-opened in much less than 2 hrs and 15 minutes. WHATEVER kind of salt was needed, it should be stored close at hand and used immediately AND whatever else might be needed should be part of an emergency preparedness for the bridge so that it does not have to close. This is political bullshit; feet dragging and bureaucratic criminality. (in my opinion when bureaucracies or single bureaucrats block needed services which they are paid to deliver, it is criminal behavior - - malfeasance; dereliction of duty; obstruction of governmental procedure; and whatever negative consequences result from their obstruction whether civil or criminal)

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