MASON, W.Va. — A bridge between Ohio and West Virginia reopened early Friday after authorities said a barge may have crashed into one of its pillars while at least nine barges ran loose along the Ohio River.

The Pomeroy-Mason Bridge was open as of 3 a.m. Friday after a West Virginia inspection team was called in to assess for any damage, news outlets reported. The bridge connects Pomeroy, Ohio, and Mason, West Virginia, and is 1,163 feet long, according to the American Society of Highway Engineers.

Brent Walker, spokesman for the West Virginia Department of Transportation, said in a news release Friday that after hearing that a pier on the bridge had been struck by a loose barge, State Bridge Engineer Tracy Brown and a team from the state Division of Highways Bridge Department visually inspected the reinforced concrete tower that was believed to have been hit.

In addition to looking for visible structural damage and misalignment of the tower, the team inspected the bearings at the tower that support the superstructure to ensure nothing was out of alignment, Walker said.

The DOH team concluded there was no structural damage from the barge strike.

Authorities had not said how the barges got loose Thursday night. Mason Police Chief Colton McKinney said the river level had been high over the past few days after heavy rains. The chief said just before midnight that all of the loose barges had been secured.

Authorities did not believe the barges were carrying anything hazardous. No injuries were reported.

The Pomeroy-Mason Bridge is a cable-stayed bridge that was completed in December 2008. Also known as the Bridge of Honor, it memorializes three local veterans, according to the Library of Congress website.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.