Those damn bolts.

A couple nights back, the fancy fence railing on the 17th street bridge in Atlanta collapsed onto the Connector below, which is the heaviest-traveled piece of interstate in the region. Fortunately this occurred at like 3am and there were neither injuries nor major vehicle damage. I drive that spot every commute, and I saw that the whole of the railing was indeed gone. It was a bit startling.

Needless to say, the DOT is freaking out to find out what caused the issue. So far, they’ve said it was “not a design flaw” and that it looks like “material failure” in that a single bolt snapped, letting 170+ feet of taller-than-your-car-is-long railing fall a good 50 feet or so onto a busy interstate.

One bolt. One. And that’s not a design flaw?

I’d like to say there’s a good chance the dude was just talking out of his ass, and couldn’t come up with a better excuse under pressure from the media. But the fact is, of course, that the damn thing DID come down. And if it only took one damn bolt to break to let it come down, that’s a pretty fucking massive design flaw….