82°F
Sponsored by

UPDATE: Bridge Collapses Over I-20 Causing Traffic Delays for Truck Drivers

HOWARD COUNTY -- "I often drive from Big Spring to Odessa to Midland and down here in Stanton..everyday," said Dawson Baty Jr., who has been driving trucks for 10 years.
UPDATE: Both east and westbound lanes of I-20 have been re-opened to traffic as of Thursday.

HOWARD COUNTY -- "I often drive from Big Spring to Odessa to Midland and down here in Stanton..everyday," said Dawson Baty Jr., who has been driving trucks for 10 years.

Truck drivers like Baty are going to have to use extra caution when driving on Interstate-20.

"Every situation is unique and different especially..this was fairly unusual for this type of incident," said Darah Waldrip, public information officer for TxDot.

Tuesday evening, an 18-wheeler hit a pillar that held up the FM 2599 bridge over I-20, causing it to collapse.

Now, drivers have a long detour.

"You gotta go so far down, down to about I think it's 818, and you gotta exit, go back around 174 I think, going towards Andrews just to go around the traffic. It's gonna make it bad on everybody," said Baty.

"It impacts a whole lot of your job because you know, you gonna be off schedule all the time, you only have a certain amount of hours to drive. So, it's gonna be a real big impact for right now," said John Jones, who has been a truck driver for 12 years.

Jones said he only had a 30-minute delay Wednesday, but traffic on the road can easily increase.

"We're only allowed to drive 11 hours a day so, with these minor delays, if it backs up say, more than 30 minutes or an hour, it affects how long we can drive and it affects our livelihood," said David Gutierrez, who has been driving trucks for about nine years.

The detour to get around the collapsed bridge is one lane in both directions, forcing traffic to move slower than usual

"We not only have to be more careful for ourselves but for families, other cars and four-wheelers," said Gutierrez.

And these drivers say there isn't really much they can do to avoid these traffic delays.

"You really don't, you really don't. It really make it hard cause the highway is one of our main assets you know, it keep you from going through small towns which the roads around here are not made for trucks it's made for cars. So you're really going out of your way. It's gonna be hard on everybody," said Baty.

According to TxDot, eastbound lanes on I-20 are expected to re-open Thursday morning.

However, the westbound lanes may be closed for two weeks while debris is being cleared out.

Page: [[$index + 1]]
comments powered by Disqus