Interstate 10 Bridge Given an A Safety Rating Last Year
Last updated 7/21/2015 at 1:43pm
The recently collapsed Interstate 10 bridge was given an A rating last year. According to the Federal Highway Administration, the score was a 91.5 out of 100. This remote desert bridge known as the Tex Wash bridge was a 48-year-old bridge with a very high safety rating. "It's possible the bridge collapse was triggered by the eastern bank of the Tex Wash shifting further east, leaving the bridge foundation unstable," said John Hunt, an engineering expert at Ayres Associates. Hunt claimed that this phenomenon is known as "channel migration," and it's not easy for bridge inspectors to see coming. "It could very well be that it all happened with this one flood, that there was no earlier sign of anything going on."
Sunday was the catalyst for this to happen with more than 5 inches of rain that fell in the open desert east of the Coachella Valley. Water flowed heavily beneath the bridge and eroded the dirt around the bridge foundations. This is the primary route between Arizona and Southern California.