Even experienced drivers and motorists are scared to cross this bridge. 

In 2011, a competing claim from China emerged, posing a threat to the nearly 24-mile bridge’s top position. However, the causeway refused to back down and stood its ground.

During the 1940s and 1950s, the expansion of New Orleans presented difficulties in accessing the northern region of the city. Whether individuals were heading north from New Orleans or traveling south towards the city, they encountered obstacles in circumventing Lake Pontchartrain, which served as a substantial hindrance.

A direct route across the lake was needed, as going around it took too much time. To solve this, plans were made to build a bridge connecting the center of the lake to its northern shore. In 1955, the Louisiana Bridge Company was established to carry out this construction project. Within a short span of 14 months, the first two-lane section of the causeway was completed and opened in 1956. This section had a total length of 23.86 miles.

The bridge’s remarkable length of eight miles results in drivers losing sight of land, leading to a few experiencing an unfounded sense of being at sea, causing them to become paralyzed on the bridge. In these situations, the police are required to provide assistance in getting them off the bridge. Moreover, there have been occurrences where mothers unable to reach the hospital on the opposite side have given birth to babies on the bridge. Additionally, an airplane once depleted its fuel while flying over the lake but successfully made an emergency landing on the bridge.

After ten years of its construction, the first bridge was seeing over 5,300 vehicles passing through it every day.

A decision was made to enlarge the causeway by constructing a second two-lane bridge next to the existing one. The new bridge was inaugurated in 1969 and was approximately 84 feet away from the original bridge.

The second span, although only slightly longer than the original, attracted the attention of the Guinness Book of World Records. In 1955, the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway was officially recognized as the longest bridge over water in the world. It maintained this record uncontested until 2011.

In July 2011, Guinness declared that the Jiaozhou Bay Bridge in China had become the longest bridge over water worldwide. Spanning a distance of 26.5 miles, it surpassed the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway. Nevertheless, supporters of the causeway were prompt to highlight that Guinness’ measurement criteria encompassed additional structures, such as land bridges and an undersea tunnel, which were not truly “over water.”

Guinness resolved the dispute by introducing two new categories. The Lake Pontchartrain Causeway was named the “longest bridge over water (continuous),” while the Jiaozhou Bay Bridge was designated the “longest bridge over water (aggregate).” Although the Jiaozhou Bay Bridge has now been surpassed by the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge, the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway still holds the title of the world’s longest continuously over water bridge, even after 60 years since its initial construction.

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