Construction Sequence

Here can see some of the steps the men of the 145th took as they constructed a substantial bridge over the Saar River at Saaralbe, France. We’ll start with what the bridge looked like before they began construction. It is interesting to see the woman at the far left walking out onto the bridge:

Saaralbe Seq 1 adj

The bridge is obviously heavily damaged. There are pontoon boats in the river as the floating bridge is put into place, as can be seen in the highlighted photo below:

Saaralbe 1-Boat Highlight

The next step is to remove the debris:

Saaralbe Seq 2 adj

The bents, or the vertical supports, appear to be mostly undamaged. So the 145th can start building the bridge deck, working from each end of the bridge:

Saaralbe Seq 3

The cathedral in the background makes it fairly easy to pinpoint the location of the bridge. Note the traffic moving along the floating bridge while the more permanent structure is built.

As the construction proceeds away from shore, the men of the 145th use another trick to help move things along. Using pontoon boats, they float a crane onto the river. Note the men near the center of the river (on the left side of the photo) waiting for the crane to arrive:

Saaralbe Seq 4 adj

It’s much easier to see in this highlighted photo:

Saaralbe 4 Crane Highlight

Now with the crane in place, they can really make progress:

Saaralbe Seq 5 adj

Again, here’s a photo with the crane highlighted to make it easier to see:

Saaralbe 5 Crane Highlight

Now they’re getting close to completing the bridge. There’s a crane on the deck of the bridge, and material can be hauled onto the bridge with trucks. It won’t be long before traffic is flowing across the bridge, and the floating bridge components can be taken up and used elsewhere:

Saaralbe Seq 6