Mackinac Bridge Authority

Spanning the Straits of Mackinac since 1957

The Authority claims that falling ice is dangerous, but I’ve been stopped for a closure and I can’t even see ice falling on the bridge deck. Is it really such a hazard for people crossing the bridge inside vehicles?

Posted on November 10th, 2022

Falling ice is definitely dangerous and a hazard for people even when they are inside their vehicles. Sheets of ice as large as garage doors fall from the flat surfaces of the bridge towers, ice spears that form on the suspender cables fall straight down toward the bridge deck, and chunks that have formed on upper cables fall hundreds of feet (the tower tops are more than 300 feet above the roadway). Some of those pieces that have survived the fall are as large as a loaf of bread, and windshields and roofs have been caved in on both Authority and private vehicles. This is not a theoretical danger. Unless you have a telescope, it would be difficult to see the falling ice from the shore, but our staff gets as close as they safely can to monitor falling ice, and it’s definitely scary. You wouldn’t stand beneath your garage eaves when icicles were falling, would you? You certainly don’t want to be under this ice when it’s falling.

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