Interstate 10 bridge washes out, cuts off traffic between Arizona, California
PHOENIX - All traffic along a major freeway connecting California and Arizona was blocked indefinitely when an Interstate 10 bridge near Desert Center, California, collapsed during heavy rain, and the roadway in the opposite direction suffered severe damage, authorities said.
The collapse on Interstate 10 in southeastern California Sunday afternoon, July 19, left one driver injured, stranded numerous motorists and complicated travel for countless thousands for what officials warned could be a long time.
The Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) said there was no estimate on when I-10 would re-open.
I-10 is the most direct route between the Los Angeles area and Phoenix. An average of more than 20,000 cars per day pass through the area that is shut down, according to federal highway statistics.
In Arizona, westbound I-10 drivers will be detoured to State Route 95, ADOT said. Drivers traveling to southern California may take SR 95 south to Interstate 8 west to California or can travel on SR 95 north to Parker. In Parker, drivers may cross into California using SR 62 westbound.
The bridge for eastbound traffic about 50 miles west of the Arizona state line gave way and ended up in the flooding water below, the California Highway Patrol said, blocking all traffic headed toward Arizona. One driver of a pickup truck that fell with the freeway had moderate injuries, officials said.
One driver had to be rescued from a pickup truck that crashed in the collapse and was taken to a hospital with moderate injuries, the Riverside County Fire Department said. A passenger from the truck was able to get out without help and wasn't hurt.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.