Two more bridge disasters in the 1980s led to more stringent inspection requirements. A section of the Mianus River Bridge on Interstate 95 in Connecticut collapsed in 1983, killing three people. An investigation into the cause of the collapse revealed the hazards of "fracture critical" designs in which a failure of one part of the bridge (in this case, a pin-and-hangar assembly) could cause a failure of the entire bridge. Fracture critical bridges now receive more attention.
In 1987, the Schoharie Creek Bridge on the New York State Thruway collapsed during a major flood, killing 10 people. It was determined that the bridge suffered from scour, or an undermining of the piers caused by the force of water over time. The flood was the final straw that caused one of the piers to give away, causing the rest of the bridge to fail. As a result, vulnerable bridges now receive underwater inspections to check against scour problems.
Following the failure of the Minneapolis I-35W Bridge, killing 13 people, the National Bridge Inventory re-entered the spotlight. Inspectors fanned out to check for problems on similar bridges (deck trusses), but errors in the NBI data made it difficult to locate all deck truss bridges.