What goes up may not come down: New Hampshire bridge stuck in raised position

A bridge used by thousands of drivers each day to cross a river in New Hampshire got stuck in the "up" position on Monday -- and may stay that way for good.

The 76-year-old Sarah Mildred Long Bridge over the Piscataqua River first showed signs of trouble on Sunday when it got stuck in the "down" position, Seacoast Online reported.

Early on Monday, crews were able to raise the span, letting a large ship pass through, but afterwards, the bridge again wouldn't budge.

As many as 14,000 cars, trucks and other vehicles drive across the bridge between Portsmouth and Kittery each day, the website added.

A faulty wheel appeared to be gumming up the works, New Hampshire Department of Transportation spokesman Bill Boynton said. Complicating matters, he said fixing the problem could cost millions of dollars -- and workers were set to close the bridge in November anyways.

Boynton told local media that two nearby bridges could serve as detours. A replacement for the Sarah Mildred Long Bridge is set to open in September of 2017.

Investigators were still looking into the scope of the sticky problem Monday, Seacoast Online added.