The bridge was opened for a watercraft to pass beneath it. It didn’t seat properly when it was closed, so the gate didn’t open, according to John Richards, spokesman for the Michigan Department of Transportation’s Grand Region office.
A manual override was completed and the southbound highway re-opened to traffic shortly before 3 p.m.
Richards said northbound U.S. 31 at the bridge was closed to traffic for 5-10 minutes. It took another 10 minutes to open up the southbound side.
One area resident said she was stopped just past the Spring Lake exit southbound for more than 45 minutes.
Bridge crews are speculating that the colder weather may have played a part in the incident, Richards said. A crew plans to check it out and do more test openings.