An excavator that crashed through the bottom of a 104-year-old covered bridge in French Village, N.B., is still there, hanging off a beam.

Residents living in the area hope the province will remove it, but are also questioning how it got there in the first place.

"I just don't understand why they were driving through there with it,” said local resident Jamie Phinney.

Signs along the Hammond River Covered Bridge say it can handle 12 tonnes. But the excavator, according to the company’s website, weighs just over 13 tonnes.

The excavator is sitting where it landed Wednesday, and ever since, the Department of Transportation has been trying to figure out what to do.

On Friday, crews were working to secure the machine to a service truck to stop it from falling or slipping further. They were also trying to build a road down to where the excavator is stuck so they can get materials down there using more heavy equipment.

Engineers are working on a design to stabilize the bridge before the machine can be removed.

No matter how the province attempts this, residents who've come to love the bridge want it to be repaired and preserved.

"I think they should fix it,” said local resident Shane Phinney. “I know a lot of the covered bridges are getting torn down or falling apart, I guess, and getting replaced with newer bridges.”

The Hammond River Covered Bridge is one of 60 covered still standing and is a symbol of the province and part of the community.  

With files from CTV Atlantic’s Laura Brown.