By Jessica Creagan
INDIAN RIVER/ST. LUCIE COUNTIES -- Structural engineers are investigating the supports of the U.S. 1 overpass at the Indian River-St. Lucie County line and the Old Dixie Highway underpass due to a crash on Dec. 26.
There is a temporary road closure on Old Dixie Highway at the U.S. 1 bridge overpass, requiring a detour from Highland Drive to Indrio Road until further notice, according to a press release from Creative Engineering Group, the project engineers for the ongoing U.S. 1 reconstruction and widening project.
Teresa Driskell, spokeswoman for Creative Engineering Group, said a semi-truck traveling northbound on Old Dixie Highway hit a support beam and lower road deck after the driver failed to retract or lower some equipment mounted on the vehicle.
The driver of the vehicle sustained some minor injuries from the crash, Ms. Driskell said.
The two options being discussed by the structural engineers are to repair the damage and allow traffic to flow again, or to reconstruct the bridge entirely, Ms. Driskell said.
A new bridge at that site was already part of the engineering group's construction plans, but isn't scheduled to take place until later in 2014, she said.
The crash does not affect the railroad system that also goes under the U.S. 1 overpass and trains can run as normal, Ms. Driskell said.
The detour around the affected area of Old Dixie Highway is U.S. 1between Highland Drive to the north and Indrio Road to the south.
Local residents and businesses will have access to their homes and places of business during the detour, Ms. Driskell said.
North-bound travel on U.S. 1has been reduced to one lane over the Old Dixie Highway overpass, a press release said.
The U.S. 1 reconstruction and widening project has been ongoing since 2012 and is expected to cost $23.2 million.
The project calls for reconstructing U.S. 1 from Kings Highway in St. Lucie County north to Oslo Road in Indian River County and widening the Indian River County portion from four lanes to six lanes.
The project also calls for the aforementioned new overpass bridge, new sidewalks, upgraded traffic signals, two ponds, drainage and landscaping. The project is anticipated to be completed in the spring of 2015, according to a press release.
For the latest update on the U.S. 1 reconstruction and widening project, visit www.us1info.com.