Lane closures for emergency repairs on I-80 in Berkeley after hit-and-run big rig crash
BERKELEY, Calif. -
On Thursday, there were new developments in the hit-and-run crash that damaged the Interstate 80 freeway overpass at Gilman Street in Berkeley.
Caltrans advised drivers about lane closures and CHP said it has identified the big rig driver who's responsible.
The far right lane in the eastbound direction has been closed since the collision Wednesday morning.
At 10pm Thursday, crews closed two additional right lanes, brought in concrete barriers to block off the area so workers can d the repair work safely.
From Gilman Street, the damage left by the big rig is clearly visible.
"We can't have vehicles running over the top of that. That's why the lane is taken," said Caltrans spokesman Bart Ney.
The lane closures are in effect until 5 a.m. Friday.
"The overpass at Gilman Street is pretty significantly damaged,"said Ney. "We lost a full girder and damaged another one."
Ney said crews need to replace a 64-foot support beam and repair the second one.
"Obviously, we're going to have a little bit of congestion in this area until we get this alleviated. Drive safely," said Ney.
The same three right lanes will be closed again Saturday during overnight hours so crews can re-stripe the roadway.
By Sunday morning, all five lanes are expected to be open.
"It's at night. Anyway, they have to do construction. It's better they do it during the day," said Berkeley resident Masako Yura.
The work is necessary after a big rig driver struck the freeway overpass while hauling an excavator.
Instead of stopping, the CHP said the driver backed up and got on I-80 Eastbound and left the scene.
The CHP said it has tracked down the company that employs the driver.
"We've identified the potential driver and we're working on putting together an interview with him,"said CHP Officer David Arias.
"I don't know how he or she thought they could get away with that. There's not too many trucks hauling excavators," said Berkeley resident Andy Lyons.
Caltrans estimated that it will cost $2 million and two months to complete the work.
Amber Lee is a reporter with KTVU. Email Amber at Amber.Lee@Fox.com or text/leave message at 510-599-3922. Follow her on Facebook @AmberKTVU, Instagram @AmberKTVU or Twitter @AmberKTVU