Radar Beacon That Aids Ships Through Bay Bridge Broken

February 2, 2015

A radar beacon that helps guide ships through the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge is broken, raising concerns about possible ship strikes.

The San Jose Mercury News reported Friday that the beacon has not worked properly since Dec. 17. Though ships have other safety measures to prevent them from hitting the bridge, the newspaper says the bridge’s three beacons are considered an important tool in bad weather.

An oil tanker collided with the bridge during heavy fog two years ago – an accident blamed in part on a broken radar beacon. The ship had already unloaded its oil.

State transportation officials are working to identify the problem with the broken beacon. They say two replacement beacons also didn’t work properly.

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