MDOT assesses damage where tanker crashed, burned - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

MDOT assesses damage where tanker crashed, burned

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DAVISON TOWNSHIP (WJRT) -

(01/04/14) - We're getting our first look at the damage under the overpass where a tanker crashed, exploded and burned in Genesee County's Davison Township Thursday morning.

See complete coverage HERE.

Michigan Department of Transportation engineers were out again assessing it and taking steel samples.

They needed to do that to verify the structural integrity of the beams is good, said Gregg Brunner, Associate Region Engineer for MDOT.

"Our number one concern is the overall safety of the public," Brunner said.

Engineers did a detailed bridge inspection Thursday night before opening some of I-69 over Irish Road where the accident occurred, according to Brunner. 

Here are the current lane closures as of Saturday evening, according to a news release from MDOT:

- All lanes are open on westbound and eastbound I-69.

- Northbound lanes are closed on Irish Road near I-69 between Lapeer Road and Court Street.

- Northbound Irish Road to westbound I-69 is closed.

- All other ramps in the vicinity remain open.

Brunner said they need to wait for the steel sample results before opening up the rest of the lanes.

"We do have our designers working on a repair for this right now," he said.

Irish Road is also being evaluated. It is charred and appears to be heavily damaged too.

John Daly, with the Genesee County Road Commission, said his department needs to see MDOT's reports to determine who is responsible for those repairs.

Cleanup continued most of the day, Friday.

"The majority of the crude oil was consumed in the fire," said Jim Innes, an environmental analyst with the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality.

The fire, Innes said, made for easier cleanup and less contamination.

Innes said, of the small portion of crude oil that didn't burn, some released into the nearby storm sewer system, but it's not moving.

"What's really a benefit now is that there's not any rainfall that would flush it out before it could be sucked out."

Some also did seep onto the soil, but that's contained too because of the cold.

Young's Environmental Cleanup has been contracted to take care of the cleanup.

Crews were on scene all day Friday and will be back throughout the weekend and next week monitoring the situation.

Don Long. with Young's, said they're confident everything is contained close to the crash site even what very little made it in the storm sewer system.

Innes said air quality appears to be OK even though there is a strong, chemical odor near the area where the crash and explosion occurred. 

Innes said the truck company will pay for the cleanup.  Thursday's HAZMAT response was huge, but we don't know yet if the company will pay for that too.

The tanker driver, as we've reported, made it out of the truck and is OK, according to authorities Thursday.  We did not get a call back from his company, Friday.

ABC12 was unable to confirm with police if he will face a traffic ticket in the crash.  Davison-Richfield Fire Chief Mike Wright said, Thursday, the driver told him he "lost it" on the slippery expressway.

 

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