Security added to Medora bridge



A security system has been added to the historic Medora Covered Bridge just east of the small southwestern Jackson County town.

The system includes six night vision security cameras, which can be viewed remotely, and four custom lantern-style LED lights to light up the bridge at night.

[sc:text-divider text-divider-title=”Story continues below gallery” ]

Details of the upgrades, completed over the past eight months by B and C Electric of Crothersville, were discussed by Brad Nolan in detail during a recent meeting of the Friends of the Medora Covered Bridge and Area.

Nolan, who owns B and C with wife, Christy, said completion of the project was delayed because of issues with utility companies.

He said a power line needed to be raised 3 feet, but the company tasked with that job refused to do it, so the line had to be trenched.

Nolan said inclement weather also hurt the process.

“Mother Nature kind of got to us in the winter with floods, rain and everything,” he said.

The cameras are rolling 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and they are able to see the entire bridge, the parking lot and out to the entrance, Nolan said.

The electricity bill is paid for by Jackson County, but it only totals around $40 per month, he said.

The effort to protect the historic landmark was sparked by frequent vandalism and arson over the years.

Jackson County Sheriff Rick Meyer said damage done to the bridge is classified as criminal mischief, which is a Class A misdemeanor if the damage is more than $750.

“Almost all damage would fall under that,” Meyer said.

If the damage totals more than $50,000, it is then a Level 6 felony, punishable by up to two and a half years in prison.

Meyer also said he would ask that the court make the suspect pay restitution for any damage done to the bridge.

The Medora Covered Bridge spans the East Fork of the White River 1 mile east of Medora on State Road 235. It was built in 1875 by J.J. Daniels using the Burr (Arch) design at a cost of $18,142 and took nine months to build. It was covered to protect the wooden structure from the weather. Before the bridge was built, the river was crossed by ferry.

Earlier this year, the 10th annual Dinner on the Bridge, originally scheduled for Aug. 1, was canceled because of concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The dinner and other fundraisers by the Friends of the Medora Covered Bridge and Area helped pay for the security system, a project that started a decade ago.

No posts to display