Crews continued on Friday to cut apart and remove beams from the former New Sharon bridge, the day after it collapsed into the Sandy River.

The project manager from CPM Constructors said work crews hoped to have the bridge remnants removed from the river by Sunday.

The historic bridge was demolished and fell into the river Thursday night as part of a $346,000 state-funded project to dismantle the 98-year-old structure.

New Sharon selectmen unanimously voted in November to let the Maine Department of Transportation remove the bridge following a report from the state warning the structure, which had been closed to traffic for decades, was in danger of collapsing.

The town was told that the state would pay for its removal, but only if the town agreed to let the state tear it down before it fell into the river on its own.

Crews on Thursday afternoon first tried to collapse the bridge by setting off explosives, but that didn’t work. The bridge fell about three hours later after an excavator drilled into the bridge’s steel beams.

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