PORTSMOUTH, N.H. — The New Hampshire Department of Transportation reports its crews are working feverishly to repair the Sarah Mildred Long Bridge, which was pushed off its track during a routine lift Wednesday afternoon by strong winds. The bridge could be out of commission through the weekend, though officials say they will have a clearer idea of a timeline at the end of Friday.

The bridge, which carries Route 1 across the Piscataqua River to Kittery, Maine, is currently the state’s primary red-listed structure out of 500 bridges.

Standing at the end of the closed bridge with a group of news reporters, shivering in freezing temperatures which dipped down to 0 degrees Thursday morning, Assistant Administrator of Bridge Maintenance Steve Johnson explained how the bridge became skewed, which is structural steel damage to the bridge’s guides. Johnson said a fabrication of new structures was under way at the state department’s Franklin yard but the cold temperatures and bitter winds were making the work more difficult.

Distributed by MCT Information Services