Afghanistan: Local government, ISAF team up to rebuild Saracha Bridge

Written by Bagram Media Center

NANGARHAR PROVINCE, Afghanistan - Task Force Mountain Warrior service members in conjunction with Afghan contractors, continue working to replace a bridge across the Saracha River in Nangahar province, Afghanistan.

Flash flooding destroyed the Saracha Bridge along Highway 1, cutting all traffic from Torkham Gate to Jalalabad, Aug. 31.

After the incident, Afghan contractors immediately built dirt bypasses for the vehicles and moved concrete to support the footers and piers of the bridge.

In September, a complete reconstruction of the bridge began to restore the traffic flow through the area.

Service members from the 1613th Engineer Company conducted the necessary demolition of the destroyed bridge and emplaced concrete footers and piers for support.

The 502nd Multi-Role Bridge Company placed towers and constructed a Mabey-Johnson Bridge, a temporary military bridge that snaps together, and launched it across the 142 meter gap.

TF Mountain Warrior service members synchronized and coordinated all assets and provided round-the-clock security and engineer escorts. Afghan National Army soldiers and Afghan National Police provided on-site traffic control and security.

Rebuilding the Saracha Bridge presented an opportunity for ISAF, and local Afghan government agencies to come together and solve a problem, said U.S. Army Maj. Gerald S. Law, an engineer for TF Mountain Warrior and 4th Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division.

"Everyone came through and did a great job. We expect the bridge to be open in late December," he added.

With the bridge is approximately 50 percent complete and are well on their way to meeting their goal of opening the bridge by the end of the year.

"This bridge represents a combined effort and shows what we can accomplish together," Law said.