Follow us:

The Today File

Your guide to the latest news from around the Northwest

May 29, 2014 at 7:56 AM

All lanes now open after 5-hour traffic mess,10-mile backup on southbound I-5

 

 

WSDOT crews repair damaged expansion joint, southbound I-5 near Holgate St. Long backups behind it. (John Lok/The Seattle Times)

WSDOT crews repair damaged expansion joint, southbound I-5 near Holgate St. Long backups behind it. (John Lok/The Seattle Times)

UPDATE 11:30 a.m. |  A half-hour all lanes were reopened, southbound traffic on Interstate 5 was close to moving at a normal speed through downtown Seattle.

UPDATE 11 a.m. | All lanes were opened by 11 a.m.

UPDATE 10 a.m. | WSDOT says it will be another hour before the closed southbound I-5 lanes reopen to traffic.

UPDATE: 9 a.m.|  Mike Allende, a WSDOT spokesman, said it is now taking two hours to travel from the Lynnwood area to Southcenter on Interstate 5.  Crews hope to reopen the blocked lanes within an hour.  The backup now stretches some 10 miles, “which is the longest I’ve ever seen it,” Allende said. Traffic on alternate routes, such as Interstate 405 and Highway 99, is also moving very slowly as drivers search for a way around.  He said the trip from the Lynnwood area to Southcenter via Interstate 405 took 90 minutes.

 

The three left lanes of southbound I-5 are blocked south of I-90 at South Holgate Street due to a broken expansion joint. Traffic, backed up for 12 miles, snakes through downtown Seattle on Thursday morning. (Mike Siegel/The Seattle Times)

The three left lanes of southbound I-5 are blocked south of I-90 at South Holgate Street due to a broken expansion joint. Traffic, backed up for 12 miles, snakes through downtown Seattle on Thursday morning. (Mike Siegel/The Seattle Times)

UPDATE: 8 a.m. | At least three vehicles were damaged by hitting the metal plate, and others may have had tires punctured, said WSP Trooper Chris Webb. Webb said he had no reports of anyone injured.

Previous post: Drivers were urged to avoid southbound Interstate 5 through Seattle in this morning’s commute after a metal plate covering an expansion joint popped up shortly before 6 a.m., and was reportedly hit by vehicles.

“The backup is at least 10 miles and growing,” WSDOT spokesman Mike Allende said about 7:30 a.m. Three of five southbound lanes were closed, and traffic was also backed up in the Interstate 5 express lanes. Allende said it’s not clear what caused the plate to rise about calf-high from the roadway near the exit for Interstate 90. Southbound drivers were urged to take Highway 99, 15th Avenue Northwest or Interstate 405. Allende said crews hoped to reopen all lanes by 8:30.

Some background: Here and here are some of our previous stories about the ongoing issue of expansion-joint work on I-5.

Comments | More in General news, Traffic & Transit | Topics: backup traffic, buckled metal, expansion joint

COMMENTS

No personal attacks or insults, no hate speech, no profanity. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate this thread by reporting any abuse. See our Commenting FAQ.



The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only, and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.


Advertising
The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►