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Oil Tanker Strikes Pier Protecting Recently Reopened NH-ME Bridge
03/07/2014 9:50 AM ET  

The New Hampshire Transportation Department said an oil tanker struck a pier at the Memorial Bridge that connects the state to Maine, and there's no apparent damage to the bridge itself.

PORTSMOUTH, N.H. (AP) _ Bill Boynton of the Transportation Department said the 600-foot-long oil tanker "Seapride" was outbound on the Piscataqua River when it struck a pier of the lift bridge about 5:15 a.m. Friday.

Boynton said the fender system designed to protect each bridge pier was damaged. The pier that was struck was on the Maine side of the channel.

Boynton said the incident has not affected lift operations at the bridge. The bridge remains open to motor vehicle traffic.

The U.S. Coast Guard is investigating the incident.

The bridge carries U.S. Route 1 traffic between Portsmouth and Kittery and it reopened last Augusta following an $81 million renovation project, which replaced the previous bridge constructed in 1923 and used until July 2011n when it was closed for so the replacement project could get underway.

(Copyright 2014 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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