PENSACOLA, Fla. (WKRG) — As of Friday, it will be two years since Hurricane Sally made landfall in Baldwin County, causing extensive damage and flooding in southern Alabama and northwest Florida.
Sally was a slow-moving Category 2 hurricane that made landfall just before 5 a.m. on September 16, 2020. The hurricane caused widespread damage in Escambia County, Florida. Many residents and businesses are still recovering after struggling to get money from FEMA.
Unsecured barges belonging to contractor Skanska USA crashed into the Pensacola Bay Bridge. For about nine months, drivers had to take the Garcon Point Bridge to get to Gulf Breeze and the beaches.
A judge ruled that Skanska was negligent in failing to secure 27 of its 55 barges from the hurricane. Hundreds of businesses, commuters and local residents filed lawsuits against the company, claiming economic losses because of the damaged bridge.
The bridge reopened in June 2021 and construction has continued ever since. The project is now more than 80% complete. Construction crews are on duty day and night.
The Florida Department of Transportation originally said the bridge would be ready by the end of this year. Mayor Grover Robinson said he has a meeting with FDOT officials later this month to update on their progress.