BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - A Canadian freighter was stuck along Buffalo's waterfront for four days waiting for repairs to be made to the Ohio Street lift bridge.
The bridge is more than a half-century old and things occasionally go wrong. This time, a circuit board with a memory card was the cause of the problem.
Public Works Commissioner Steve Stepniak explained, "The computer talks, actually to the motors, which allows it to lift, and unfortunately that was malfunctioning."
The Robert S. Pierson couldn't pass under the bridge when it arrived in Buffalo early Friday evening. Jim Watkins, who manages Silo City, says it's odd that a bridge failure could last four days.
"They were just tied up almost across from the old Rod and Gun Club. If Jimmy Griffin were around he probably would have been sitting outside having a beer laughing at it," Watkins said.
But the delay wasn't very amusing to the crew and owner of the Robert S. Pierson, which was hauling tons of wheat.
Jim Saddall, Vice President of Operations for Lower Lakes Towing, said, "It cost us all-in-all close to 90 hours of lost time."
The Pierson was supposed to be making its second trip to Buffalo by now. But Tuesday, it was just reaching the huge Lake and Rail silos on Childs Street to unload its haul.
Stepniak says it would have happened sooner, but there was a second malfunction.
"The spare one, the brand new spare one we had in place didn't effect and kick on, so that's why we had to have a new one shipped in this morning."
The bridge is now functioning properly and the Pierson will soon be on its way. Siddall said his company doesn't plan on taking any action against the city for the delay.
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