Bridge Deck Collapses in Glenwood Springs

August 16, 2017

Tuesday evening in Glenwood Springs, Colorado, a section of a 64-year old bridge being torn down to make way for a new structure unexpectedly collapsed, endangering the Union Pacific tracks which run beneath it.

Demolition crews had been working on the bridge since Monday, taking down the Grand Avenue bridge piece by piece.

Around 8 p.m. crews at the south end of the bridge were pulling a girder out of the bridge when it got hung up on an anchor on a middle pier, between Seventh Street and the edge of the Colorado River, said Police Chief Terry Wilson. The pier buckled and then collapsed. The video below shows the collapse as captured on a live stream set up by Colorado Mountain College, located nearby.

"A lot of the bridge was just removed a lot more suddenly than anticipated," said Wilson.

No one was injured.

The Colorado Department of Transportation confirmed the incident was not planned. It said the girders did not fall into the Colorado River or end up off the project site. "The remainder of the old Grand Avenue Bridge structure over I-70 and the Colorado River has been assessed and is secure," CDOT said in a news release.

The $126 million bridge replacement project is largest infrastructure project on Colorado's Western Slope in a generation. CDOT hopes to have it completed by Thanksgiving.

Video, screen capture courtesy of Colorado Mountain College.