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US Bridge Is So Terrifying People Pay Others To Drive Across It For Them

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When you are traveling by car, you are sometimes treated to beautiful landscapes, and some of the best ones can be seen overlooking one of the nation's beautiful bodies of water as you drive across a bridge. Usually bridges are short, quick spans, but sometimes they are bigger and longer, which for a few drivers can be pretty scary. In fact, there is one bridge in the U.S. that some people find so terrifying that they have to hire someone to drive their car, with them in it, the entire length of the span.

It's the Gov. William Preston Lane Jr. Memorial Bridge in Maryland, commonly known as the Chesapeake Bay Bridge. Originally opened in 1952, its 4.3 miles connect Sandy Point on the west to Stevensville on the east. At the time it opened, it was the third-longest bridge on Earth and the world's longest continuous steel structure over water. In 1973, it got even bigger when a second bridge was built next to it for westbound traffic. That one is even taller, with a suspension tower rising 379 feet above the water and the road 200 feet high, 14 feet higher than the eastbound road.

So why is it so scary to some? Well as you ascend to the bridge's highest point, especially going eastbound, the road curves and creates an illusion like you are about to drive off the edge and into the bay. On top of that, the barriers along the sides aren't tall or solid, so anyone with a fear of heights can see the water and just how high above it they are. Adding to the anxiety is the lack of shoulders, so there really isn't a place to stop once you are on the bridge.

If that isn't enough, the weather can definitely increase drivers' fears. In storms, visibility can be incredibly low and conditions poor out in the middle of the water. Wind speeds can hit some high numbers as well, so bad that authorities have had to shut the bridge down because of them, like they did back in January due to 55 mph winds.

To help folks who are too scared to make it across, companies like Kent Island Express offer drive-over services. For $40, one of their drivers will take the wheel and bring fearful customers across. It isn't a once-a-day thing for them either, there are days when dozens of people require their services. Apparently, some passengers are so terrified they've asked if they can travel in the trunk.

The bridge has seen some accidents, and a couple bad ones too, like one in 2013 that caused a car to plummet off the side of the bridge. Miraculously, that driver survived by escaping through a broken window and swimming to safety. There was also a 43-car pile-up caused by fog earlier this year. But even with the occasion accident, just about all of the 60,000 vehicles that cross the span daily make it across safely, so overall there isn't anything to be afraid of.