WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – An emergency road repair caused a 6-mile back up on the Massachusetts Turnpike Friday evening.
Crews closed down an eastbound lane on a squeezed down part of the Mass Pike between Chicopee and West Springfield. They had to repair a loose expansion joint. “It’s like hard edge to roll over. It’ll tear the tires and ding the rim, do a lot of damage,” Brad Rose of Belchertown said.
The 4-hour repair caused major delays on the Pike and on Interstate 91, leading up to the Pike interchange. Traffic started moving again by 6 o’clock, but going forward, drivers may be slowed down again in that part of the Pike. The bridge deck replacement work that started in 2012 will continue into next year.
Another spot here in western Massachusetts to plan ahead, especially during rush hour, is the Route 5 tunnel in West Springfield that takes you under the rotary near the North End Bridge. After a temporary fix last winter, the Massachusetts Department of Transportation has begun repairs to fix the road surface under the tunnel for good.
Brianna Carlson said, “It’s good keep the road safe because it avoids accidents. People breaking their cars…which costs money… certain things like that. For the pedestrians too, if accidents happen, it can be dangerous.”
Starting early next year, drivers can expect delays on the elevated portion of I-91 in downtown Springfield. Before the end of the year, MassDOT plans to name a contractor that will rebuild the bridge deck.