SALT LAKE CITY — An emergency pothole repair Sunday morning closed several lanes of northbound I-15 stretching over 800 South in Salt Lake City.
The pothole punctured fully through the bridge, making it risky for drivers to travel over, the Utah Department of Transportation said. The left three lanes of I-15 over 800 South are closed as crews work to make repairs.
A Utah Highway Patrol trooper discovered the pothole about 7 a.m. Sunday and called it in to UDOT's traffic operation center, as well as the agency's incident management team, according to UDOT spokesman John Gleason.
Crews investigating the pothole noticed "some of it had gone completely through the bridge deck there and a little bit of concrete fell onto 800 South" leading UDOT officials to close down several lanes of traffic, Gleason said.
The pothole is estimated to be a "couple feet wide" with about "1 foot" having seeped through, Gleason said.
Officials believe the pothole is a result of severe weather, including the amount of rain over the last couple of days, Gleason added.
"All of that precipitation can really do damage to the road (and) cause erosion," he said.
The affected bridge was last inspected in July and officials found no indication of any issues, according to Gleason.
"It's a good indication of just how fast this type of erosion and damage can happen when you have heavy rains like this," he said.
As of 10 p.m., two lanes of northbound traffic were open while the three left lanes remained closed.
Crews are working to have the area repaired by the Monday morning commute, but Gleason advises drivers to be prepared to take an alternate route.
"There's a chance that we may have it repaired by tomorrow morning's commute, but there's a good chance that we won't have it done by then," he said.
Gleason suggested I-215, State Street or Redwood as possible alternatives for northbound commuters on Monday morning.
"Whatever makes the most sense for you — take an alternate route so that you're not stuck in that traffic backup," he said.
Contributing: Simone Seikaly, KSL Newsradio