TxDOT Is Assessing Damage After Another Houston Bridge Is Hit By A Truck

The latest incident happened early Wednesday at the Houston Avenue bridge over I-10

Authorities said the Houston Avenue bridge was struck by a backhoe that was on the back of a flatbed truck traveling eastbound on I-10. Four other 18-wheelers then hit a piece of dangling metal and had their trailers ripped open. Texas Department of Transportation spokesman Danny Perez said the truck with the backhoe wasn't supposed to be traveling that route in the first place.

"In this case the driver did not have a permit," explained Perez. "So as he was traveling through the Houston area he was doing so without a permit, a required permit. His vehicle was over height and does require a permit."

And that's often the case in bridge strikes. “In other situations we have some that are permitted but they're off their route or they don't have the proper height for the permit they're given," said Perez.

What's also problematic is that the Houston Avenue bridge is one of the lower bridges on the freeway system. But Perez said it could be replaced it the future with a taller bridge.

"It's definitely going to be included in the North Houston Highway Improvement Project and the plans we have for reconfiguring the interchange there at I-10 and 45," said Perez.

In the meantime, TxDOT said the bridge is safe to drive but they're limiting northbound traffic to one lane as a precaution. The bridge was repaired just earlier this year after it was hit by another truck in the fall of 2016.

Perez said TxDOT is also working with trucking companies to ensure compliance with permitting regulations for oversized loads.

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Gail Delaughter

Gail Delaughter

Transportation Reporter

From early-morning interviews with commuters to walks through muddy construction sites, Gail covers all aspects of getting around Houston. That includes walking, driving, cycling, taking the bus, and occasionally flying. Before she became transportation reporter in 2011, Gail hosted weekend programs for Houston Public Media. She's also covered courts in...

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