Bridge operator: ‘please do not bypass active bridge traffic control gates’

No one likes waiting at a bridge when you’re in a hurry, but SDOT’s bridge operations crew would like to remind bicyclists that bypassing a gate can have serious consequences.

This past Sunday, Aug. 25, a cyclist risked his life when he squeezed underneath the south gate of the Fremont Bridge trying to cross the bridge as it was going up.  

Fortunately, the bridge operator spotted the cyclist and waited to raise the bridge until the cyclist had bypassed the gate on the other side of the bridge.

“I am always extremely vigilant watching for pedestrians and bicyclists.  There are times in the operation procedure where I expect to see someone go under a gate or run a light (it happens nearly every opening here at Fremont Bridge).  This incident made me particularly upset because, in nearly seven years here, this was the ‘latest’ I have ever had someone bypass a gate.  If I didn't see him, he would have definitely been on the moveable span when the bridge started to rise,” crew stated in the incident report.

Bridge Operations Crew Chief Brace Wallace warned that “this particular individual could have had a life changing moment if the bridge operator had not spotted him in time.”

This seems to be a common problem on the Fremont Bridge, and we urge everyone to please obey bridge traffic control gates when they are active.

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Anne-Marije Rook's picture
Anne-Marije Rook