A Maryland man who has endured 28 years of long commutes over the Woodrow Wilson Bridge across the Potomac River in Washington, D.C., ceremonially launched the demolition of part of the old 5,897-ft long span. Dan Ruefly gained the honor by winning a contest for the "Toughest Bridge Commute" involving the span. Ruefly, who has a 3.5-hour trip, pushed a plunger about 12:30 a.m. Aug. 29 to begin the countdown. Demolition subcontractor Demtech Inc., Dubois, Wyo., then detonated charges to bring down about a half-mile-long section of steel deck girders. Demolition of the bridge began in July and will be completed next year. The old bridge is being replaced by two, parallel 6,075-ft long bascule bridges, the main element of a $2.44-billion project that includes major interchange upgrades on both sides of the river. The first of the new bridges was fully opened to traffic July 16 and the old one was closed.