A large structural beam on the Riverside Dr. overpass will need to be replaced after it was damaged by a semi, city officials said.
The steel beam was damaged Dec. 6, when a truck carrying industrial equipment became wedged underneath the overpass. Detours were put into place, and weight and lane restrictions were imposed while the damage was assessed. Last week the city’s manager of capital projects, Wes Hicks, said engineers identified significant damage to a major structural beam, which was bent and separated from the road surface by the impact.
Today Hicks confirmed the beam cannot be repaired, and will need to be replaced entirely.
“Our engineers are diligently working on a plan to replace the beam,” he said. “The engineers are working on putting together a package, so we can go out and find a contractor.”
Hicks said the beam will likely take more than a month to replace, as the Christmas holidays may delay manufacturing and delivery of the new beam. In the meantime, Hicks said the lane restriction will remain in place, and no overweight loads will be allowed to cross the overpass.
On the positive side, Hicks said temporary bracing will not be necessary, so long as the lane remains closed over the damaged portion. Traffic was temporarily diverted over the closed lane yesterday when a semi drove up onto the guardrail, but Hicks said the traffic did not cause any new complications.
“That was a big risk,” he said, “but we had no options.”
Prince Albert Police said no charges or tickets have yet resulted from the Dec. 6 incident, but their investigation remains ongoing. In yesterday’s incident the driver of the semi was handed a fine for deviating from a standard route.
On Twitter: @TMacPhersonNews
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