** FILE ** Divers search for victims near the Interstate 35W bridge which collapsed over the Mississippi River in Minneapolis, in this Aug. 2, 2007 file photo. When 13 people died last summer in the collapse of the Interstate 35W bridge in Minneapolis, the National Transportation Safety Board found structural problems within days but expected a full investigation to take more than a year. The NTSB chairman, Mark V. Rosenker, plans to update reporters on the agency's progress Tuesday Jan. 15, 2008. (AP Photo/Morry Gash, File)
St. Paul, Minn. (AP) Highway officials in Minnesota have shut down a bridge over the Mississippi river after discovering a problem that may be linked to a bridge disaster last summer.
Thirteen people were killed when an interstate bridge suddenly collapsed in Minneapolis last august. Investigators suspect the failure of some girder-connecting plates known as gussets.
Yesterday, inspectors found four gusset plates slightly bowing on the highway 23 bridge at St. Cloud and immediately shut it down.
The bridge is 51 years old but isn't scheduled for replacement for another seven years. Minnesota's acting transportation chief says it will remain closed until it's deemed safe, repaired or replaced.