It’s one thing to be exposed to unseemly cracks and heaves in the sidewalk, or a crumbling bridge, or a roadbed that’s become the victim of a sinkhole. But it’s an altogether different problem when you suffer an injury because of these ongoing, dangerous infrastructure problems.
In fact, we no longer live in a time when you simply have to accept the fact that your environment is falling apart all around you. In the digital age, you can use your cell phone camera app to report the potentially hazardous situations to your local law enforcement, building department, or even a private organization made up of caring individuals who wish to see their infrastructure repaired and improved before someone gets seriously hurt.
Says the Barnes Firm, New York personal injury attorneys, in a recent Instagram post, “SEE? a broken sidewalk in your neighborhood? Be sure to SNAP it? with your smartphone! Then, SEND it? here- sidewalksnap.com.” While the writing is fun if not clever, the message conveyed is a serious one. Someone, sooner of later is going to be hurt and the district where the broken sidewalk exists is going to be legally liable.
But as it turns out, crumbling infrastructure in the U.S. is a countrywide problem that isn’t going away soon. According to a new article, a new federal infrastructure package being engineered on Capital Hill can’t come soon enough for a nation whose “basic underpinnings” are crumbling.
Said deal is also coming at a time when the nation is emerging from the COVID-19 pandemic. While the very definition of the term “infrastructure” is largely dependent on which side of the political spectrum you stand on, one thing is for sure, the rise in remote work has created a heavy demand on broadband connectivity.
Recent hazardous and even deadly winter power outages in Texas have exposed severe vulnerabilities in the country’s electrical grid. Plus, companies and organizations that have traditionally called the dense inner cities their home, are now considering spreading out to less crowded areas.
All this said, here is a list compiled by cable business network CNBC of U.S. states most in need of infrastructure aide.
It’s been said that the Mountain State has suffered from a serious lack of infrastructure investment not in recent times, but for decades. The Department of Transportation estimates that 21 percent of its bridges are at best, in very poor condition. That’s makes the state the country leader in bad bridges.
30 percent of West Virginians can’t get internet. On top of this, the power grid is said to be unreliable and spotty. The state is currently second in outages after the state of Maine.
While Rhode Island’s bridges and broadband access have improved somewhat over the years, its roads are said to be in awful shape. Also its coastal location makes the coastline vulnerable to the effects of climate change.
Because of severe weather like tornadoes, Arkansas’s power grid has taken a big hit in recent years, making it among the worst states for consistent power outages. Only half the residents have access to the internet making the big state more or less off the connectivity grid.
If you need to fly, air service is severely limited with zero non-stop flights to international destinations like Paris or Rome. However, its roads are said to be improving.
Known for its wide open spaces and gorgeous vistas, Montana offers almost no office, retail, or industrial working spaces. Any existing space comes at a premium with very few vacancies said to be available to eager companies and start-ups.
Because of the state’s vast expanses, internet connectivity, if it exists at all, is said to be slow. More than a quarter of the state has no access to internet at all. But on the plus side, its roads and bridges remain in decent shape.
The granite state suffers from serious road congestion, a power grid that’s prone to long outages, and an airline service that is limited at best. Its extreme weather, with its hot, flood-plagued summers and very cold, snowy winters, earns the state a low grade on the “sustainability” chart.
On the positive side of things, New Hampshire has some of the toughest drinking water standards in the Union, and the internet is accessible to all but a slight few.
The great State O’ Maine’s power grid is failing. It leads the nation in power outages. Things are so bad that the state’s three main electric utility organizations are considering selling their assets to a new, consumer-owned company called “Pine Tree Power.”
While this move might prove ineffective in the long-run, in the short-term it is a much needed proactive move in the right direction.
On a good note, broadband is widely available but super expensive. However, if you wish to fly non-stop internationally you can pretty much forget it. And when you drive to another state, be weary of crumbling roads and bridges. Or, you can stop, take some picture of them with your smartphone and send them on to Capital Hill before someone gets seriously hurt.