A tractor trailer driving on the Toll Road headed for Goshen knocked a highway sign down, blocking all lanes of traffic Wednesday morning.
According to Indiana State Police the semi was transporting meat products and driving in the right lane, another semi traveling in the middle lane attempted to switch lanes, apparently not seeing the meat truck. The 29-year-old driver of the meat truck wrenched the semi to the right to avoid an accident. He smashed into a support for the overhead sign, collapsing the sign, which fell at mile marker 15.4 across two lanes of traffic at mile marker 15.4 east of Ripley Street.
When semi trucks get into accidents they’re much more likely to cause massive damage because of their sheer height and weight. Semis are usually 13 feet 6 inches and can weigh as much as 8000lbs when fully loaded.
The height becomes an issue fairly often in Indiana. An Indianapolis bridge was smashed into in February. The Allisonville Road bridge that runs over I-465 was struck by a too-tall truck, scattering debris across the highway and blocking traffic for several hours.
A spokesperson for the Indiana Department of Transportation stated, ‘It’s not the lowest bridge we have in the system here in Indianapolis but it is low,’ leaving little doubt that semi trucks hitting low bridges could be a statewide issue.
Trucks that are over 13’6” must apply to the Indiana Department of Revenue to receive a special permit to operate on Indiana roads. With the permit comes information on routes that the trucks can take to avoid low bridges and overpasses.
The Allisonville Road isn’t the only low bridge in the Indianapolis area. Incidents have occurred at the overpasses over Virginia Street and Calvary Street. The city is planning to address the issue with the Allisonville Road bridge. It will be raised an additional 5 feet when construction begins on it after Memorial Day.
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