NEWINGTON, Conn. (AP) – The Connecticut Department of Transportation plans to use an unmanned aerial vehicle to conduct a limited visual inspection of the Gold Star Memorial Bridge.

The inspection planned for Tuesday is part of the agency’s ongoing evaluation of new technologies.

In this case, DOT will assess the ability of the drone to photograph areas typically difficult to reach using traditional means, such as ropes and climbers or snooper trucks, which have an arm and bucket that extends under a bridge platform.

The Gold Star Memorial Bridge consists of two spans crossing the Thames River from New London to Groton. The structures are the longest bridges in Connecticut at roughly one mile each. The main span rises approximately 100 feet above the river.

A complete routine inspection was conducted last October.

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