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    Skyway expansion joint pops; one southbound lane closed

    By Times staff writer
    © St. Petersburg Times
    published November 16, 2002

    ST. PETERSBURG -- The trouble-prone Sunshine Skyway Bridge popped another expansion joint in the roadbed Friday, forcing the state Department of Transportation to close the outside southbound lane to put plates over the problem seam.

    Marian Pscion, spokeswoman for FDOT, said that after the joint in the right lane was secure, engineers would close the left lane for an inspection. Only one lane will be closed at a time. The problem is on the south side of the hump, closest to Manatee County.

    No plans had been made late Friday on repair of the joint. Work to cover it was expected to continue into the weekend and cause minor tie-ups.

    Pscion said the joint is much smaller than the joints that were replaced over the summer, which caused massive traffic tie-ups.

    "I don't know how long an expansion joint is supposed to last," Pscion. "I do know that it's a very corrosive environment out there with lots and lots of traffic."

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