June 3, 2002, 5:15 p.m.
I-40 Bridge Hit Update

Sunday evening (June 2, around 8:30 p.m.) the first demolition phase involving the smaller portions on the west side of the bridge was torn down. Removal of the debris is currently being done.

Crews are knocking down the height of one of the piers in preparation of tentatively removing them later this evening. A combination of demolition devices are being used including a wrecking ball, some explosives, concrete shears and other cutting devices to meet the different demolition needs at the site. Because this is a controlled process, no massive blasts are planned.

Crews are currently working to clean up the areas around the fallen piers and using different cutting devices and equipment to break up span portions into smaller pieces for easy removal.

The Magnolia Marine company has been stabilizing the barges today so that crews can begin the demolition on the eastern portions resting on the barge tomorrow.

At today's commission meeting the Transportation Commission approved an agenda item declaring the project an emergency, approving the demolition contract to Jensen Construction of Tulsa, programming the reconstruction of the bridge on I-40 and authorizing the repair work on SH-2 and SH-9 utilizing emergency procedures.

Further information including detours maps, graphics and previous press releases are available on our web page at www.okladot.state.ok.us.