After being reopened with some restrictions for less than a day, a small bridge on Littlerock Road south of Tumwater has been closed again.
“Heavy truck traffic continued to use the bridge even though closed to trucks,” stated an alert from Thurston County Public Works. “Therefore, to protect the public and prevent any damage to the temporary repairs that continued heavy vehicle use could cause, the bridge is being closed.”
The two-lane bridge over Salmon Creek, between 110th Avenue Southwest and 93rd Avenue Southwest, was built in the 1950s. It was closed Jan. 27 after crews found scour under the center pier, according to road operations manager Lucy Mills. Scour occurs when water washes away rock or footing around a bridge’s foundation, she said.
Temporary repairs were made, and the bridge was reopened Wednesday for passenger vehicles and pickup trucks without trailers. All other vehicles, including heavy trucks and buses, were asked to take a four-mile detour in the area to avoid using the bridge, county officials said.
But by Thursday, even though there were signs about the restrictions posted in the area, it was evident that heavy vehicles were crossing the bridge, Mills said.
The county recently received a $3.4 million federal grant to replace the bridge, according to Matt Unzelman, a civil engineer with Thurston County Public Works.
And until it is replaced this fall, the bridge will remain closed to all traffic, Mills said.