America’s Growing Infrastructure Crisis

This is America in 2019.

In scenes like this across the country, bridges are literally collapsing before our eyes.

Collapsed bridge in Chattanooga, TN. Picture via CNN.

Just this week in Chattanooga, Tennessee, a concrete beam fell from an I-75 overpass onto I-24 . This didn’t happen out yonder in the hinterlands. As Mayor Berke noted, this is one of the most heavily trafficked intersections in the United States.

This is America in 2019.

This latest catastrophe coincides with a new report from the American Road & Transportation Builders Association that reveals just how dire the situation really is: There are 178 million daily crossings on over 47,000 structurally deficient U.S. bridges.

Sadly, this is not “news” to ATA. In recent weeks, we’ve testified at two Congressional hearings to sound the alarm. In the words of Chis Spear, “we are no longer facing a future highway maintenance crisis — we’re living it — and every day we fail to invest, we’re putting more lives at risk.”

What happened in Tennessee this week is yet further proof how real this present crisis is. Keep in mind: In 53% of highway fatalities, the condition of the roadway contributed to the accident.

Infrastructure and Quality of Life

Beyond safety, deteriorating infrastructure takes a human toll in myriad other ways. We’ve launched a new television to highlight just how directly and deeply this issue affects all Americans throughout the course of our daily lives.

The average commuter spends 42 hours stuck in traffic every year — nearly two full days. Everyone has a traffic horror story that’s come with a high cost — a missed meeting, family dinner, or the Little League opening pitch. These are the moments and memories that are lost as we sit imprisoned in our vehicles.

Today, the biggest obstacle that stands between us and the places we work, live and play is thousands of miles of crumbling roads, highways and bridges that are creating bottlenecks and gridlock.

And data from the American Transportation Research Institute confirms what we all sense on the roads: traffic congestion at the worst bottlenecks is growing worse year-over-year.

This is America in 2019, but it doesn’t have to be this way. Join our movement and demand that Congress fully fund our roads and bridges NOW — because life won’t wait.