(CBSNewYork) — Bridge problems in Bayville, Long Island has many Nassau County drivers frustrated.
They say the broken bridge is leaving them stranded and preventing them from getting across Oyster Bay.
Richard Valicenti knows the exact spot where the Bayville bridge splits into two because he sees it stuck all the time.
“You just get that bad feeling right away because you know it’s going to be a bad day,” said Valicenti.
He owns the bridge marine right next to the draw bridge and says the broken bridge is hurting business.
“It’s very frustrating,” said Valicenti. “It’s been going on forever.”
The bridge is owned by Nassau County and connects the village of Mill Neck to Bayville.
The problem is, it regularly gets stuck in the upright position after opening for boats to pass by, stranding people on both sides – sometimes for as long as 24 hours.
“You don’t even know when the bridge is going up,” said resident Yenny Crisy. “And it’s dangerous.”
“I did a walk from Oyster Bay down here, and I thought shoot, what if the bridge is stuck?” asked resident Marjorie Marshall. “I’m going to have to walk all the way around or swim.”
The bridge also gets jammed when it’s down so operators can’t raise it for large boats to get through.
There is a detour drivers can take using Bayville Avenue, but most will tell you, it’s too far.
“I try to be patient but it’s annoying and frustrating,” said Jen Jones of Bayville.
Josh lafazan is the Nassau County legislator for the area and took on the role six months ago.
“Our infrastructure in Nassau County is aging rapidly and this bridge is the epitome of aging infrastructure,” said lafazan. “The pieces inside the bridge are so old that they continue to malfunction.”
He says the county plans to fix the bridge next year but it won’t be finished until 2021. He’s hoping to expedite the process.
“We need to do better as a government, the bare minimum we can do is ensure the safety and well being of our community and if someone is getting stranded, with no way of getting home, then we are failing as a government,” said lafazan.
Legislator lafazan plans on holding a public forum this Thursday night to figure out a solution. He’s bringing together the county executive’s office, the department of parks and public works, as well as first responders. For more information, visit the forum’s Facebook page.