TDOT to repair a part of I-24 at mm 178 - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

TDOT to repair a part of I-24 at mm 178

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UPDATE: Drivers may experience traffic backups at the I-24E/U.S. 27 split due to an emergency TDOT construction project.

While patching potholes on Sunday, TDOT crews noticed some of the deck panels cracking on the bridge at mile marker 178 in Chattanooga.

“They were very concerned that they might crack and, at the very least, cause damage to vehicles,” said TDOT spokesperson, Jennifer Flynn.

If left untouched, part of the bridge could have caused concrete to collapse or disintegrate and cause severe damage to cars.

“It would've just been a bad situation, it could've fallen out underneath the bridge,” Flynn said.

TDOT inspects bridges every two years, but the bridge in question was not previously deemed hazardous.

“Probably a result of the extremely cold weather and just a lot of wear and tear in that area,” Flynn explained.

“There's so much traffic everywhere,” said Chuck Blackwell, who just drove six hours to Chattanooga from Mississippi.

“I remember when I was a kid, you don't see the traffic you do now,” he said.

Crews installed a plate to cover the damaged area until a permanent fix can be made.

“People need to be aware that there's going to be a bit of a bump when they drive down there, and there will be signage warning people about that,” said Flynn.

The project is too extensive for TDOT's bridge repair crew to complete. An outside contractor is needed to make permanent repairs. Once TDOT secures a contractor, it could take about a week to fix everything for good.

PREVIOUS STORY: Tennessee Department of Transportation will repair a part of a bridge on I-24 East near mile marker 178 in Chattanooga. 

Spokesperson Jennifer Flynn said in a press release that crews discovered a broken deck panel and slab on the bridge deck. Because of the size of this broken deck panel and slab, more permanent repairs will have to be made by the bridge crew. 

TDOT Bridge Repair has been notified and are on their way to assess and fix the problem as soon as possible. 

Until the repairs can be made, the outside lane on I-24 East at mile marker 178 will remain closed. 

Currently there is no estimate on how long these repairs will take. 

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