Gephyrophobia is defined by Daisy Ellis, BSc Biological Sciences with German, Imperial College London, UK as:

"an intense fear of crossing bridges by vehicle or on foot. It is an anxiety disorder resulting in profound fear, anxiety or discomfort over the bridge collapsing when crossing the bridge."

Even if you've experienced any level of anxiety or fear while traveling over a bridge in a vehicle, you still have probably never heard of Gephyrophobia. But you know that while traveling in a vehicle, the level of Gephyrophobia changes with each bridge. Crossing a small overpass on a freeway probably doesn't trigger much anxiety, but coming up on a suspension bridge covering over a mile span over a body of water can generate paralyzing fear.

While clinical Gephyrophobia can be unreasonable, the anxiety felt by those without the phobia is definitely a sliding scale. Sometimes crossing a large bridge can create some anxiety for those who otherwise wouldn't feel anything at all crossing a bridge. Especially if you are aware of the safety rating of the bridge.

In Louisiana, its fair to have a level of perpetual anxiety on the roads. The state ranks as one of the worst 10 states for Structurally Deficient bridges, according to ARTBA (American Road & Transportation Builders Association). They sourced data from the Federal Highway Administration National Bridge Inventory (NBI) from 2023.

Based on this research, Louisiana has the 7th worst percentage of Structurally Deficient bridges in the United States. The research says 12% of the bridges in Louisiana are Structurally Deficient.

Here are the highest traveled Structurally Deficient bridges in the state of Louisiana:

1. Calcasieu River Bridge, Calcasieu Parish

2. Interstate I20 over St. Louis & SW RR, Caddo Parish

3. Interstate I10 over Vet Mem Hwy, Jefferson Parish

3. Interstate I10 over Vet Mem Hwy, Jefferson Parish (a second crossing ranks in the top ten)

5. US61 over US 190-Florida Blvd, East Baton Rouge Parish

6. Interstate I10 over Sabine Relief, Calcasieu Parish

7. La3046 over R/R, City Streets, La 611, Jefferson Parish

8. I20 over Marshall St/La 1/RRs, Caddo Parish

9. I20 over STL&SW-KCS RR/Westerfiel, Bossier Parish

9. I20 over STL&SW-KCS RR/Westerfiel, Bossier Parish (a second crossing ranks in the top ten)

These bridges all see over 45,000 daily crossings, on average, based on the research.

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