Truck hits overpass; traffic disrupted
A truck hauling an excavator heading northbound on Fortune Drive on Friday, May 11, hit the Tranquille Road overpass, forcing closure of the span through the weekend and creating a traffic jam due to the traffic rerouting.
The incident was the second time in the last month the overpass has been struck by a vehicle.
The excavator struck the overpass in two places. City of Kamloops workers went up on a scissor lift to chip off some of the loose concrete from the overpass and to inspect and assess the damage.
Jim McNeely, the city's street and internal services manager, said vibrations from traffic on the overpass could cause more damage depending on the severity of the crack, which is why the overpass will be closed through the weekend as the damage is assessed.
Though it is too early to know the extent of the damage, as workers chipped away at the crack, McNeely noted the hollow sound coming from their strikes against the crack was not a good sign.
McNeely said the fix won't be a difficult one, but crews will have to expose the rebar, ensure there are no broken pieces, then replace the concrete before re-opening the overpass.
As of 4 p.m. on Friday, May 11, northbound traffic was restricted to one lane, while all southbound lanes were open.
The gridlock that ensued saw vehicles backed up south across Overlanders Bridge and into the downtown core.
"The engineering people are going to go up, chip off the concrete and have a look — and then we'll make an assessment as to how significant the damage is," McNeely said,