Crews constructed a temporary barrier after an SUV crossed three lanes of traffic, jumped an 18-inch curb and crashed through the concrete railing of the Arlington Memorial Bridge on Sunday night, creating a gaping hole.
The driver swam to safety after his SUV splashed into a shallow area of the Potomac River around 10:30 p.m.
He was waiting on the shore when D.C. Fire and EMS responded to the scene. They transported him to a local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
Jersey barriers are now blocking the 28-foot-wide hole in the railing, which is on the bridge's south side.
Crews will have to enact a more permanent replacement later, after engineers from the National Park Service create a plan with others, reported News4's Megan McGrath.
In the meantime, the current arrangement isn't considered to be a safety issue for drivers, authorities said.
The bridge is owned by the National Park Service. An NPS official said the bridge -- which was built in 1932 -- is regularly inspected and there had been no concerns with respect to the retaining walls.
The bridge was closed for several hours after the crash. Authorities said it's likely that some lanes will have to be closed when the permanent repairs are done.
Park Police are investigating the cause of the accident. Charges are pending against the driver.