OPERATION BRIDGE RESCUE follows the race to rebuild the Blenheim Covered Bridge in New York – an icon of early American engineering. Built in 1855, it was the longest single span covered bridge in the world, but Hurricane Irene destroyed this National Historic Landmark in 2011.
Now a team of elite bridge builders and engineers are faithfully reproducing the famous 226-foot long structure. But the clock is ticking – they must build the new 176-ton bridge in the floodplain, then move it up onto new abutments before spring melt water floods their worksite.
In China, bridge builders face the same challenge protecting their thousand-year-old tradition of woven timber beam covered bridges. These stunning ancient bridges are the heart of their communities; used for trade and worship as well as linking remote villages. But typhoons are also destroying these bridges and the Chinese must find a way to keep bridge building skills alive, or they could die out forever.