ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) - Whether it's durable construction, attentive maintenance or just a fortunate geography that doesn't include the freeze and frost-filled winters of the northeast, Florida's bridges continue to be among of the sturdiest in the nation.
An Associated Press study of federal records shows that there are 65,605 structurally deficient bridges and 20,808 fracture critical bridges nationwide -- but only a handful of those are in Florida.
The Florida Department of Transportation said that of the 6,661 bridges it maintains and another 2,496 bridges it inspected last year that are owned by local jurisdictions, 17 have structural deficiencies and two are fracture critical. And the department says deficiencies are being addressed.
The state's transportation secretary says the challenge is working with local jurisdictions on locally controlled bridges.