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Bridge closure? No problem

The Sandy Fire District experienced no complications during the brief closure of the Bull Run Bridge Friday, April 25.

The closure, originally expected to last up to 24 hours, began at 8 a.m. and the Bull Run reopened before 5 p.m. the same day.

'They got done way fast,' said Fire Chief Gary McQueen. 'We were very pleased it went as fast as it did.'

The fire district and Bull Run-area community members were concerned that the closure would render the 400-or-so people on the other side of the bridge helpless should a fire or medical emergency occur.

To prepare, Sandy Fire placed one of its rigs on the other side of the bridge with two firefighters, so they could quickly respond to any incidents. There were none - no surprise to the district, which has rarely been called to the area.

The brief closure was billed as a trial run for an extended closure expected late this summer, which could see the Bull Run disabled for up to a month.

McQueen says that Sandy got 'a taste' of what it will be like this summer, and says the partnerships formed in advance of last week's bridge closure will be vital in August.

'Corbett, Gresham, Multnomah County, AMR, the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office and the Portland Water Bureau all are aware of the situation now,' he said. 'It raised quite a bit of awareness.'