Fallen bridges fail to shake confidence - jenster by okyestao



 The Dallas Morning News
                                                                                                                          Bold adaptation
                                                                                                                          A Country Life, the southern-fried adaptation
                                                                                                                          of Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya, is well done, but
                                                                                                                          not to perfection. 9B

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Monday, January 24, 2005

      YOU DON’T SAY?
                                                              Fallen bridges fail
                                                              to shake confidence
  A runner let off some                                                                                                                   ventory, which is a listing of in-
  steam Sunday before                                                                                      Map of washed-out,
                                                               Engineer: Area spans                      lower-rated bridges, 5B
                                                                                                                                          spection ratings, found there are
  the Resolution Run in                                                                                                                   potentially several dozen bridges
  McKinney.                                                     are safe despite low                                                      in the region that inspectors rated
                                                                 ratings for dozens                 plus a flash flood carrying massive   in worse shape than the two Ellis                                             RANDY ELI GROTHE/Staff Photographer

  Mercury                                                              By JIM GETZ
                                                                          Staff Writer
                                                                                                    timber and debris equals destruc-
                                                                                                                                          County bridges that washed out.
                                                                                                                                          Some of those are maintained by
                                                                                                                                                                                 Survey team members stand on the FM55 bridge in Ellis
                                                                                                                                                                                 County that was washed out Jan. 2. A second Ellis bridge that
  to bounce                                                      When the FM55 bridge in
                                                              southern Ellis County collapsed
                                                                                                        “They’re both older bridges on
                                                                                                    fairly large waterways where the
                                                                                                    water tends to come up quickly,
                                                                                                                                          cities or counties. Most carry fewer
                                                                                                                                          than 2,000 vehicles a day. The
                                                                                                                                          bridges were noted not only for
                                                                                                                                                                                 collapsed in July also had a support column in midstream.
                                                                                                                                                                                 portation Department’s Dallas          state-maintained bridges within
  back soon                                                   into the raging waters of Cham-
                                                              bers Creek on Jan. 2, it followed
                                                                                                    and they both have a lot of [de-
                                                                                                    bris] upstream that tends to get
                                                                                                                                          their poor overall condition but
                                                                                                                                          specifically for the underlying sup-
                                                                                                                                                                                 District, which in addition to Ellis
                                                                                                                                                                                 includes Collin, Dallas, Denton,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        the district are in good shape — 60
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        percent have high enough inspec-
      How low can the                                         the same equation as a bridge col-    carried downstream,” said Bill        port structure and erosion of the      Kaufman and Navarro counties.          tion ratings that they need little or
  mercury go? A blast of                                      lapse in July on Ovilla Road that     Pierce, bridge engineer for the       creek bed.                             “All of our bridges are structurally   no work. About 35 percent are rat-
  arctic air sent chills through                              led to the death of two men:          Texas Department of Transporta-           “People should not be con-         safe. An act of nature we cannot       ed      highly       enough     that
  North Texans on Sunday,                                        An older bridge with at least      tion in Ellis County.                 cerned,” said Tony Okafor, Mr.         control.”
  but warmer weather is on                                    one support column in the water           A recent National Bridge In-      Pierce’s counterpart for the Trans-       The vast majority of the 5,400         See ENGINEERS Page 5B
  the way.
      Temperatures dipped
  into the low 20s throughout
  most of the Dallas-Fort
  Worth area Sunday
  morning, the National
                                                                        Many eager to return generosity of Celina man after fire                                                                                         Doctors
  Weather Service reported.
      But it could have been
  far worse. A massive
  snowstorm pummeled the
  Northeast with snow,
  strong winds and subzero
  temperatures. The storm
  prompted a few dozen flight
  cancellations Sunday at
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        in crash
  Dallas/Fort Worth
  International Airport,
  officials said.                                                                                                                                                                                                        Transplant specialists’
      In North Texas, it should
  be practically balmy by
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        small plane went down
  Tuesday, with a high                                                                                                                                                                                                      south of Abilene
  temperature approaching
  70 degrees.                                                                                                                                                                                                              By BRANDON FORMBY
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Staff Writer
                      Eric Aasen
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Two well-known Dallas doctors
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        respected for their experience and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        expertise with organ transplants
                COMING                                                                                                                                                                                                  died early Saturday morning after
                TUESDAY                                                                                                                                                                                                 a plane crash south of Abilene.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Paulose Mathai, 50, and Karl
       A scrumptious                                                                                                                                                                                                    Robert Brinker,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        58, were killed
       honor for Scout                                                                                                                                                                                                  after the single-
       A local Girl Scout                                                                                                                                                                                               engine plane Dr.
       smashes the national                                                                                                                                                                                             Mathai was pi-
       record in a delicious                                                                                                                                                                                            loting clipped
       contest. Metro                                                                                                                                                                                                   power        lines,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        crashed        into
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        trees, lost a wing
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        and erupted in- Karl Brinker
                PAGE 1A                                                                                                                                                   MELANIE BURFORD/Staff Photographer            to flames, police
                                                                   Since his house burned down in October, Hugh Stone has been trying to regain his health in a McKinney nursing                                        said. The plane
  The miracle on                                                   home. The 84-year-old World War II veteran suffers from cancer, diabetes and emphysema.                                                              was preparing
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        to     land      in
  Mockingbird                                                                                                                                                                                                           Brownwood,
  Mockingbird Station has
  helped transform a corner
  of Dallas that seemed to be
  sliding toward obscurity.
                                                                      New home is within reach                                                                                                                          Texas,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        struck the lines,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        authorities said.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            The       men Paulose Mathai
                   INSIDE                                             By JENNIFER EMILY
                                                                          Collin County Bureau
                                                                                                                                          has also worsened.                 home, which will include a                 were on a hunt-
                                                                                                         HOW TO HELP                         “There’ll be three bedrooms     ramp and handicap access.                  ing trip.
  Handling of county                                                  Hugh Stone sounds like a
                                                                                                         Mail donations to First State
                                                                                                                                          — the biggest one for my wife,”       Mr. Stone’s friends have                    “This is pretty much sending
                                                                   child looking forward to                                               he said with a huge grin while     taken over the food bank he                shock waves through the trans-
  funds is investigated                                            Christmas when he talks about
                                                                                                         Bank, Attn: Hugh Stone Fund,
                                                                                                                                          lying on his bed in the nursing    used to run from his yard, but             plantation community,” said Pam
                                                                                                         P.O. Box 1450, Celina, Texas
  The FBI says the director of                                     his new house.                        75009. For details, call Bob     home, dressed in his trade-        he hopes to reclaim his duties             Silvestri, spokeswoman for the
                 a firm that                                          Mr. Stone, 84, a local legend      Santiago at 972-382-2055.        mark overalls.                     when he’s feeling better. He               Southwest Transplant Alliance.
                 collects                                          in Celina for his generosity as                                           Construction will begin as      wants to regain the 10 pounds                  Dr. Mathai, a lung specialist,
                 property tax                                      the leader of the town’s unoffi-                                       soon as Mr. Stone can leave the    he’s lost.                                 and Dr. Brinker, a kidney special-
                 and vehicle                                       cial food bank, lost his old                                           nursing home. Although the            Mr. Stone said he’s touched             ist, practiced at Methodist Health
                 registration                                      house when it caught fire in       II veteran a new house.             contributions and promises         but not surprised by the kind-             System. Ms. Silvestri said Dr.
                 money for                                         October.                               Since the fire, Mr. Stone’s     from volunteers have been          ness of friends and strangers.             Brinker helped develop Method-
                 Dallas Coun-                                         After reading about Mr.         health declined further, and        great, Mr. Stone still needs       He had no doubt there were                 ist’s guidelines for organ donor re-
                 ty diverted                                       Stone’s plight in The Dallas       he’s now in a McKinney nurs-        about $10,000 more to build        good people in the world.                  quirements. His guidelines were
  Ronne          thousands of                                      Morning News, the community        ing home. He suffers from can-      the house where the old struc-        “They just love me, I guess,”           emulated at hospitals across
  Mendelson      dollars to                                        and people across the country      cer, diabetes and emphysema.        ture stood, said Bob Santiago,     Mr. Stone said.                            North Texas as organ donations
                 personal                                          donated nearly $60,000 to-         The health of his wife, Norma       a friend who has led efforts to                                               became common.
  bank accounts. 8B                                                ward building the World War        Jean, who has breast cancer,        collect money to build the             E-mail jemily@dallasnews.com

                                                                                                                                                                                                                         See TRANSPLANT Page 7B

      Number of
      contributors      1,950                                   They can see the stars                                                    Weeding out the bad charters

                                                                                                                                                 tate education officials re-           THINKING ABOUT                   Currently, charters receive a
      collected $1,271,342.13
      The Dallas Morning News is
      collecting money through
                                                                better in the country                                                            cently put forth new rules
                                                                                                                                                 that they think will slam the
                                                                                                                                                                                          EDUCATION                   per-pupil allocation from the state
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      — roughly $6,000 — but they get
                                                                                                                                          door on free-wheeling charter                                               nothing from the local tax base or

      Jan. 31 for distribution to 21                                    had to chuckle at the no-                                         schools.                                                                    from state technology and build-
      agencies that assist the                                         tion of Brian and Barbara                                              The state lacks the authority to                                        ing funds.
      hungry and homeless in                                           Cullen, two refined and                                            move quickly on schools that are                                               The idea to tie facility money to
      North Texas. Send your check                              sophisticated New Yorkers,                                                failing in the classroom and mis-                                           test scores is just a proposal at this
      or money order, payable to:
                                                                raising cattle on a Texas farm.                                           using public money. The new rules                                           point. But if it becomes reality,
      The Dallas Morning News                                       Looks like a scene straight                                           are supposed to fix that.                                                   charters that the state deems “suc-
                                                                out of Green Acres, with Brian                                                And while those tougher rules               KENT FISCHER                cessful” would have gained a con-
      P Box 910845
                                                                and Barbara playing the roles of                                          grabbed headlines, other key as-                                            siderable advantage when it
      Dallas, Texas 75391-0845
      or donate online at:
                                                                Oliver and Lisa Douglas.                JAMES RAGLAND                     pects of the plan have garnered lit-                                        comes to expanding programs and
                                                                    But with their roots firmly                                           tle attention but could have a sub-        If a charter’s students are suc- enrollments. And those deter-
                                                                planted in Hunt County soil for     bara quipped: “I would like to        stantial     impact     on     many    ceeding, the thinking goes, then mined to be “unsuccessful” will be
                                                                20 years now, the Cullens have      say thank you to this university      successful charters.                   the state shouldn’t concern itself left behind.
                                                                lasted far longer than the TV       [Texas A&M-Commerce] for                  For example, charter schools       over whether the school’s CEO at-       Charter schools are tuition-
                    INDEX                                       sitcom, which ran from 1965-        taking a Bronx gal and showing        that post consistently good test       tended an annual 15-hour training free public schools that are not
  Regional roundup ...............................2B            71.                                 her the difference between an         scores can get a reprieve from the     class, as is currently required.     run by local school boards. In-
  Lottery ...............................................2B         That doesn’t mean that the      Angus and a Brangus.”                 state’s nepotism laws, teacher             There’s also a move afoot in stead, the state gives tax money to
  Obituaries .......................................6-7B
  The Quiz.............................................8B
                                                                Cullens don’t poke fun at them-        Barbara, you see, took it up-      training requirements and some         Austin to reward successful char- nonprofit groups, businesses and
  Overnight ...........................................9B       selves from time to time. Like                                            other rules that many charter op-      ter schools with more money, grass-roots do-gooders to create
  At a glance ......................................10B         earlier this month, when Bar-         See COUPLE’S Page 4B                erators consider more nuisance         most notably state funding for fa-
                                                                                                                                          than effective.                        cilities.                               See PROPOSALS Page 4B
II+                            . . . . . . . .
The Dallas Morning News                   DallasNews.com                                                                                      METRO                                                                                                  III+      Monday, January 24, 2005                             Page 5B

Engineers:                                                                                 TROUBLED BRIDGES OVER WATERS
                                                                                           Here is a look at the status of two bridges that washed out and 11 others
                                                                                           in the Dallas area that inspectors rated lower. Like those that washed out,
                                                                                           most have columns in the middle of waterways.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       COMMUNITY CLIPBOARD
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Resort’s yard sale to aid     DALLAS
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        to 4 p.m. Wednesday through
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Friday. Call 972-717-2441.

Area bridges                                                                                                                                                                                                          workers hurt by tsunami Infomart to hold series
                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Four Seasons Resort and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Club will have an all-day yard                    on import certificates
                                                                                               Lake                                                                                                                   sale to benefit employees in the                      Global Market Series: Im-
                                                                                                                                                                                          Lavon                       Maldives who were affected by                     port Certificate Program will be
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      last month’s tsunami. More                        from 8 a.m. to noon Wednes-

are all safe
                                                                                                                                                               COLLIN CO.
                                                                                                             DENTON CO.                                                                                               than 80 employees of the Four                     days from Feb. 2 to Mar. 16 at
                                                                                            26                                                                                                                        Seasons Maldives lost their                       Infomart Dallas, 1950 N. Stem-
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      homes and possessions in the                      mons Freeway. The cost is $45

                                                                                             North                                                             190
                                                                                             Lake                                                75                                                                   Kuda Huraa community. The                         per session or $285 for the en-
                                                                                                                                                      2                                                               yard sale is from 7 a.m. to noon                  tire series. Mention The Dallas
                                                                             D/FW                     114                                                                                      ROCKWALL CO.           Saturday at the Four Seasons                      Morning News to receive early
     Continued from Page 1B                 “People should not be                                                                          White 3               635
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      employee parking lot, on Byron                    payment fees of $40 per session
                                                                                                                                                                           30            Hubbard                      Nelson Way between MacAr-                         or $250 for the entire series
rehabilitation would make them              concerned. All of our                                 183                                      Rock
                                                                                                                                           Lake                                                                       thur Boulevard and Leland.                        through Wednesday. Register
adequate for a while, and the re-                                                                                                                                                             KAUFMAN CO.             Donated items, except clothing,                   at www.iexportimport.com or
mainder usually are scheduled
                                          bridges are structurally                                                             4                   5                            80
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      can be dropped off from 8 a.m.                    call 214-747-1300.

for major work or replacement.            safe. An act of nature we          TARRANT CO.     30
The Dallas District has scheduled
57 bridge projects totaling $51.3             cannot control.”                              Creek
million this fiscal year, which
ends Aug. 31.
   But the number of remaining
older bridges with columns in the
                                           Tony Okafor, the bridge
                                            engineer for the Texas
                                                Department of

                                                                                                                  9                                       45

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       minute be Kneaded.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     50massage   Knead                                      or

                                           Transportation’s Dallas                                            1382 10
middle of creeks or riverbeds is          District, which includes six                                                                                                 DALLAS CO.                                                                                                                      To be the best you
unknown. Although state inspec-                  area counties.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        have to train with
tors usually rate bridges at least                                                                67                  11                         ELLIS CO.
every two years, and district in-                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      the best. Start your
spectors do checks every six           instead of 30-foot spans in older                                            664                                                                                                                                                                                career with the
months, the inspectors do not          bridges. Columns can now be                         12                                                                                                                                                                                                          school that
track whether columns are in the       spaced 120 feet apart, wider than                                                                                                                                                                                                                               CARES!
middle of a waterway.                  many waterways. That’s the plan                                                                            TEXAS
   The National Bridge Invento-        for the 900-foot FM55 bridge, a
ry ratings are the basis for listing   $5 million project that Mr. Pierce
                                                                                                                                                                       Area                                        972.484.8180 • 2880 LBJ Frwy. Ste 501 (Forest Ln. @ Josey Ln.) Dallas, TX • BBB • NCBTMB
                                                                                                                                                                       of detail                    HENDERSON
a bridge for repair or replace-        expects to take seven months to                                                                                                                                 CO.
ment in coming years. Many of          build.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Call Toll Free
the worst bridges have been re-
paired or replaced since the in-
                                           Other replacements or reha-
                                       bilitations in upcoming years in-
                                                                                                  Waterways                                                                                                         Window Washing                                                             1(866)4TY-KUHN
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               1 (866) 489-5846
ventory came out, and others are       clude State Highway 289 over
scheduled to be. The FM55              Panther Creek in Frisco, the Syl-
                                                                                                                                                                                              NAVARRO CO.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                &      Gutter Cleaning                                           TYKUHN
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   S    e r v   i   c e s
bridge that washed out Jan. 2          van Avenue Bridge over the Trin-                                                                     55                                                                          Window Washing
“was in the pipeline” to be re-        ity River in Dallas and frontage     JOHNSON                                                           13                                     0                 10          #Windows In & Out                 Out Only               Professional Window Washers
placed in a few years, Mr. Pierce      roads along U.S. 67 over Five           CO.                                                                                                          Miles
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            No Mess Inside or Outside Home
said.                                  Mile and Ten Mile creeks. In a $1                                                                                                                                           1-11                $80             $60
                                                                                     Location                          Status                                                                                      12-18               $100            $70                  Same or Next Day Service
   But of those that still need to     million job last year, the tops of
be addressed, many probably            columns were repaired on east-                          1944 10,400
                                                                                     1. SH 289 over Panther Creek      Replacement to begin this year                                                              19-26               $125            $80                  Any Size Home, Any Style Windows

have columns that are potential        bound Interstate 30 over White                2. Audelia over Jackson Branch An “imminent” fix because of erosion
                                                                                               1953 4,790                                                                                                                                                                   100% Satisfaction Guaranteed
                                                                                     3. W. Lawther over2,730 Rock To be repaired because of erosion; no timetable but in
                                                                                               1965 White
                                                                                                                                                                                                                   27-34               $150            $90
targets for swift-moving trees.        Rock Creek in Dallas, a bridge                                                                                                                                                                                                       Over 10 Years Experience
And bridges such as the one over       that averages more than 71,000                Creek                             the top third on priority list                                                              35-50               $175            $100
                                                                                     4. Sylvan 1958Trinity17,750
                                                                                               over                                                                                                                                                                         Lowest Prices for the BEST Service
Ovilla Road, built in 1953, and        vehicles a day.                                                                 In preliminary engineering; looking to award construction                                   51-74               $200            $120
                                                                                     River                             in 2007 with new bridge in 2009                                                                                                                      Free Over Phone Estimate
the one over FM55, built in 1966,                                                                                                                                                                                  75-100              $225            $140
were battered for years before         100-year floods in mind                        5. I-30 over White Rock Creek
                                                                                     6. U.S. 80 over Terry Creek
                                                                                                                 71,285Tops of columns repaired within the past year
                                                                                                                       Plans call for rehabilitation within five to six years
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Free Sills Cleaned                                        Gutter Cleaning
collapsing.                               Mr. Okafor said that new                                                                                                                                                        Storms & Screens $1 each                                     1 Story Home $60
                                                                                     7. Loop 12 over Five15,900
                                                                                               1925        Mile        Plans call for rehabilitation within five to six years                                                                                                          2 Story Home $90
   “It does occur. I won’t lie to      bridges on state or U.S. routes               Creek 1948 5,800                                                                                                                Satisfaction Guaranteed                                           3 Story Home $140
you, but it is not something that      are designed with the force of                8. U.S. 67 northbound frontage In design; contract to be awarded in 2006                                                          Or You Don’t PAY!                                     Any Size Home & All work done by hand
                                                                                               1969 7,930
occurs frequently,” Mr. Pierce         100-year floods in mind.                      road over Five Mile Creek
                                                                                               1940 5,653
said. “These failures are a sur-          Given those standards and the              9. U.S. 67 southbound             In design; contract to be awarded in 2006
prise to me. … Those guys in 1966      level of funding the Transporta-                        1952      12,200
                                                                                     frontage over Ten Mile creek
probably never dreamed that this
bridge would fail in this way.”
                                       tion Department has to just keep
                                       up with other repairs and main-
                                                                                               1953 Heath
                                                                                     10. FM 1382 over 6,300 Creek Being rebuilt
                                                                                     11. Ovilla1931 Red5,948Creek
                                                                                                over     Oak           Replaced after being destroyed by a flash flood July 29
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        TIRED OF LOUSY SERVICE?
                                       tenance, Mr. Okafor said it would                       1966 frontage
                                                                                     12. U.S. 67 north 1,700 over Plans call for rehabilitation within five to six years
       Brush cleared                   be nearly impossible to target                Ward Branch                                                                                                                                                SO WAS I, so I got together with my neighbors and compiled
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 a list of our favorite service companies. We call it Angie’s
        repeatedly                     older bridges with columns in                 13. FM55 over Chambers
                                                                                                                       Destroyed by flash flood and debris Jan. 2; construction
                                                                                                                       of new bridge to take seven months                                                                                         List. Now when we need a plumber, auto mechanic,
    Mr. Pierce and Mr. Okafor          waterways for repair.                                                                                                                                                                                  ®  painter or any other service company, we call to see who
                                          “If one column collapses every              SOURCES: Texas Department of Transportation; city of Dallas; North Central Texas Council of Governments
said road crews repeatedly                                                                                                                                                                                                                           our neighbors recommend. Consumer support lets
cleared brush from under the           20 years,” he said, “do you re-      Data analysis by JIM GETZ/Staff Writer                                                                   TOM SETZER/Staff Artist                                           Angie’s List give you unbiased, unvarnished
FM55 span in the months before         place all of the columns in the                                                                                                                                                                                  homeowner ratings. If you want to find great service
it collapsed.                          state? We would like to replace                                                                                                                                                                                  or if you have a problem with a service company,
                                       them, but funding is the issue.”                                                                                                                                                        n
    He and Mr. Pierce said when                                                                                                                                                                                       More tha                         Angie’s List can help.
                                          Norm Glaze, a Sunnyvale offi-     funding, but Mother Nature                                                            “The only way to stop it, if you                     132,000
new bridges are built or replace                                                                                                                                                                                      homeow
older ones, crews in most cases        cial who oversaw the replace-        plays tricks on us,” he said. “You                                                 have the money for it, is to con-                        belong to
                                       ment of one of the worst rated       think something will hold up, but                                                  crete the channel. Otherwise,                                     st!
are able to place columns outside                                                                                                                                                                                      Angie’s Li                              www.angieslist.com
a creek or river channel. That is      bridges in the state in 2004, on     water is more powerful than you                                                    water is going to do what it wants
                                       Town East Boulevard over Duck        think it is. Whenever you take                                                     to do.”                                                                   DALLAS                                   FORT WORTH
because today’s technology en-
ables 120-foot horizontal spans        Creek, agrees.                       water and put debris in it, it’s like                                                                                                              (972) 503-9600                              (817) 561-0771
                                          “Your biggest problem is          a jackhammer hitting things.                                                             E-mail jgetz@dallasnews.com                      As featured in the Chicago Tribune, the Boston Globe, Kiplinger’s Personal Finance, Real Simple,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          U.S. News and World Reports and on NPR’s Marketplace and the CBS Morning Show.

                                                                                                                                            Same great
                              January 31, TXU Gas                                                                                           gas service.                                                          February 1, Atmos Energy
                                                                                                                                            New name.

          A major change is happening at your gas company. TXU Gas is now Atmos Energy, America’s largest natural gas utility. For over 100 years, we’ve
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