MINNEAPOLIS -- There is no smoking gun folks; the blame on the Sabo bridge failure is more engineering speak.
"We were getting some wind induced vibration on the cables. That vibration caused the stress in what we call the diaphragm plate," City of Minneapolis Public Works Director Steve Kotke said Friday when explaining what caused two cables to fail on the Sabo Bridge last February.
Wind blowing just the right way caused the cables to vibrate and those vibrating cables caused the plates holding those cables stable to break, or in engineering speak, to be compromised.
But no matter what speak is spoken it's tough to digest. A five year old bridge that cost more than $5 million to build got put on the disabled list because of bad vibrations.
The engineering firm that designed the Sabo Bridge is California based URS Corporation, the same firm that inspected the 35W Bridge before its collapse and the same firm that paid $52 million to 35W bridge victims and families in a settlement.
Today's report on what compromised Sabo was done by a Chicago-based engineering firm. That firm is being asked by the city to design the plan to fix Sabo.
All of those designs and reports cost money, and city council member Gary Schiff says no public money should be used to clean up the Sabo mess.
"I want to make sure that the taxpayer doesn't have to pay for the repairs for any part of this disaster," Schiff said.
Kotke says he isn't prepared right now to provide an answer on who will foot the bill.
Schiff says he won't stand by and watch that buck get passed.
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