Bay Bridge flaws: bad welds, delays cost many millions extra
Caltrans paid hundreds of millions of dollars over the original bid price for work on the Bay Bridge eastern span that was plagued by shoddy welding and completed more than a year late, state documents reviewed by The Chronicle show.
In agreeing to pay the extra money, Caltrans accepted responsibility for much of the delay, the documents show - even though bridge officials have publicly blamed bad welding done at the Shanghai factory of China’s largest maker of heavy machinery.
Officials told state legislative investigators that weld-related delays added $100 million to the cost of the bridge’s tower and steel modules that form the road deck. However, contract documents show that Caltrans took blame for more than a year and a half of problems in China and paid out more than $275 million for those delays and to get the bridge done on time.