You're trying not to think about it, but your heart starts pounding louder and faster.

The closer you get, the louder and faster it beats.

You are afraid of driving your car — the same car you drive every day — over the "big bridge."

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As it turns out, you're not alone. You have gephyrophobia. It's a fear of driving over bridges.

According to the Balance and Dizziness Center, "If you have a fear of driving over bridges, you likely develop a sudden heightening sense of anxiety when approaching a bridge. Some people have only mild instances of this fear while others may experience a feeling of panic, terror, or dread." Symptoms include shortness of breath, rapid or fast heartbeat, and trembling.

The good news is that the Delaware River and Bay Authority (DRBA) can help. They have a program where an officer will actually get in your car and drive you and your car over the Delaware Memorial Bridge.

The DRBA actually identifies the fear as acrophobia, which is the irrational fear of heights.

Nevertheless, the help is there if you need it.

According to the DRBA, every year officers responded to about 450 cases of people needing that help over the bridge.

Here's what happens. If you're driving, you pull over to a safe location and call 302-571-6342, or simply #3722. An officer will be dispatched to you, you'll sign a waiver, and the officer will drive your car over the bridge.
The DRBA notes that sometimes the process might take some time, so be prepared to wait for the service, or call ahead.

Good luck, and happy traveling!

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