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Truck Driver Who Caused Paoli Bridge Collapse Pleads Guilty

Mary Lambright will appear in court next month for sentencing.

Mary Lambright

Photo: Harrison Wagner

Mary Lambright says she's sorry for driving a semi truck over a bridge in Paoli on Christmas Day 2015. The weight of the semi caused the bridge to collapse.

The truck driver who caused a historic Paoli bridge to collapse on Christmas Day in 2015 pleaded guilty this week.

Mary Lambright pleaded guilty to several charges, including reckless driving and disregarding an official traffic control device.

Police say Lambright ignored six-ton weight limit signs when she drove a semi over the iron bridge on South Gospel Street. Police say the semi weighed close to 30 tons at the time of the accident.

Lambright apologized for the damage after a court appearance last year.

“I’m really, really sorry about what happened and, if I could go back and do it over again, I wouldn’t be so stupid,” she said.

A judge will sentence Lambright in April.

The Cleveland Bridge and Iron Company originally built the structure in 1880. It’s in Paoli’s downtown historic district, which means it has to be repaired instead of replaced.

Construction is underway and is expected to cost about $750,000. County commissioners hope the bridge will reopen by August.

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