Update: 3 lanes on I-10 West back open following train derailment
POSTED: Friday, October 18, 2013 - 8:17pm
UPDATED: Monday, October 21, 2013 - 8:34am
2 lanes will remain closed for 2-3 weeks for repairs
El Paso, Texas (KTSM) — UPDATE:
TXDoT opened three lanes along I-10 West shortly after 7:30 p.m. Saturday, nearly 24 hours after westbound lanes were completely shut down following a Union Pacific train derailment.
TXDoT Spokesperson Blanca Del Valle said the two right lanes will remain closed for the next two to three weeks until the repairs to the infrastructure are complete.
Texas Department of Transportation crews were setting concrete safety barriers Saturday afternoon. Spokesperson Blanca Del Valle said once that is complete, three lanes will open. Two lanes will remain closed for the next 2-3 weeks until repairs are completed.
Del Valle said railroad crews started, but are waiting for materials to be delivered soon. Installation is expected by 5 p.m. Saturday.
Friday night, a Union Pacific train derailed and hit one often Cotton Bridge columns causing excessive damaged that paralyzed westbound traffic on I-10 at Cotton. TxDOT says the move was a necessary safety measure.
TXDOT engineers are currently on-site to assess the damage.
If you are traveling on I-10 over the weekend, you are advised to take the official detour by TxDOT:
Exit at Cotton to Missouri, turn right onto Willow, left onto Wyoming, left onto Cotton and right onto Missouri.
Other suggested alternate routes for I-10 WB traffic as follows:
Take Americas (Loop 375) southbound to the Cesar Chavez Border Highway (Loop 375), to Santa Fe, to Paisano (US 85).
Take US 54 northbound to Transmountain (Loop 375) to I-10.
NewsChannel 9's Kay Recede is working on the story and will bring the latest at 10, Saturday night.
Follow her on Twitter for updates: kayrecede
or on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/#!/krecede
I-10 West at Piedras has been completely shut down after a train derailed under the Cotton Street Overpass.
A look via Texas Dept. of Transportation cameras shows traffic backing up near I-10 and Copia in the westbound lanes. Drivers are being diverted off the highway at the Piedras St. exit.
The derailment happened around 8 p.m. Friday, and NewsChannel 9 spotted at least 6 cars derailed. One of the pillars is broken in half, another severely cracked.
Police dispatchers tell NewsChannel 9 there were no injuries, but due to the extent of the damage to the interstate, they will continue to divert traffic until TXDOT workers can make repairs.
Firefighters from the El Paso Fire Dept. arrived at the scene, after Union Pacific officials suspected some of the train cars might contain hazardous materials. However, no teams are investigating yet with HAZMAT gear on, and no evacuations have been called.
There is no estimated time of completion for the repairs. Drivers are encouraged to take an alternate route. We are told the closure may last as long as tomorrow.
To view a photo gallery of the derailment, click HERE