Local police shutting down portions of Mississippi River Bridge

Published 7:04 pm Tuesday, January 28, 2014

NATCHEZ — Vidalia Police Department officers will be stationed at the foot of the east bound Mississippi River Bridge to prevent motorists from crossing into Natchez because of weather conditions.

Click here for a list of weather-related closures for Wednesday

VPD Chief Arthur Lewis said conditions on all Vidalia streets and the bridge have become too dangerous for travel.

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“We’ve been told by the Mississippi Department of Transportation that they don’t have any more materials to de-ice the bridge,” Lewis said. “We’re shutting it down until they can get it fixed because it’s too dangerous right now.”

Natchez Police Chief Danny White said he would station officers near the west bound bridge, but would not be preventing motorists from crossing.

“We’ll have guys there letting everyone know they need to be careful if they want to cross the bridge, but we just can’t shut it down,” White said. “You have to leave it open for people in case there’s an emergency.”

MDOT District Engineer Albert White said his crews have supplies of de-icing materials, but would stand behind any decision local law enforcement made.

“If they want to close the bridge, we’ll work with them and stand behind that decision,” White said. “We have limited supplies, but we’ll use what we need to use to keep the roadways safe.”

White said crews would monitor the situation on the bridge overnight and begin reapplying de-icing materials in the morning.

Adams County Sheriff Chuck Mayfield issued a curfew for all non-emergency travel from 7 p.m. today to 6 a.m. Wednesday.