Hole in I-15 bridge was more than just a pothole, UDOT says

Mar 25, 2019, 3:05 PM | Updated: 3:07 pm
FILE: Roadwork like pothole repair would be covered under the $1 trillion infrastructure bill -- but critics say it's what else is in the bill that has nothing to do with infrastructure that's problematic. (Photo: KSL TV)
(Photo: KSL TV)

Three lanes of I-15 were shut down on Sunday when what was initially described as a “pothole” opened up on a bridge in Salt Lake City.

Now, however, the Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) is saying that this was more than just an ordinary pothole. This hole went straight through the bridge, and UDOT Spokesperson John Gleason warns that more of them may be on the way.

The pothole on I-15

“I don’t know if I would necessarily call it a pothole,” Gleason told KSL Newsradio’s Dave & Dujanovic, joining the show on the air earlier today. “It was damage to the bridge deck itself.”

The hole, which appeared in the I-15 bridge over 800 South, cut all the way through the bridge, so that anyone looking up from underneath could see through to the sky.

Recognizing the immediate danger, UDOT employees blocked off three lanes of traffic as soon as they arrived on the scene and began work on repairs immediately.

The cause of the hole, Gleason says, was an active winter filled with unusually frequent rain and snow storms. “All of that weather can cause erosion not only to bridges but to roads as well,” Gleason says.

This hole, he warns, most likely will not be an isolated case. He told Dave & Dujanovic: “This is an issue we could see popping up across the state this spring.”

Gleason assured listeners, however, that UDOT would promptly respond to every issue that comes up and make sure they are taken care of.

He asks every Utahn to report any potholes they find using the UDOT Click ‘n Fix app, which allows users to drop pins to report potholes for repairs.

“We ask people, who serve as our eyes and ears, to let us know if there are issues that we need to address right away so that we can get out there immediately,” Gleason says.

For now, Gleason has assured us that the hole in the I-15 bridge was not part of a bigger problem. UDOT experts have analyzed the bridge and confirmed that there the problem was isolated to a single 13-foot by 8-foot panel, which has been replaced.

More to the story

If you missed John Gleason live on the air, you can still catch the full interview on the Dave & Dujanovic podcast.

Dave & Dujanovic can be heard weekdays from 9 a.m. to noon on KSL Newsradio. Users can find the show on the KSL Newsradio website and app, as well as Apple Podcasts and Google Play.

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