Several major motor vehicle collisions in the Chattanooga area have recently occurred involving oversized tractor-trailers and interstate bridges, resulting in traffic backups lasting for hours and unplanned, emergency repairs.
One of these incidents required overnight repairs and the careful work of construction crews to remove a damaged concrete beam and reinforce the structure. Less than a year earlier, an incident occurred on the Interstate 75 South overpass ramp in which a piece of railing fell from the ramp struck by the vehicle, injuring the driver.
The Split revamp
This location in Chattanooga is incorporated in the I-75/I-24 interchange referred to as “The Split.” Named as one of the worst bottlenecks in Tennessee, It is currently part of a 132.6 million transportation improvement effort to reduce the sharpness of roadway curves, improve lanes, and replace bridges.
The three-stage project, slated to cost $132.6 million, is aimed at enhancing the interchange, which has been plagued with excessive congestion and traffic accidents. The project is expected to last into 2021, and will require some accommodation and patience from the millions of drivers who pass through The Split each year.
The transportation and construction professionals working on The Split project are utilizing a design/build approach, which allows faster construction progress as certain aspects of the upgrade continue to be designed and finalized. This approach is expected to shave about 18 months off of what the schedule would have been without overlapping the design and build phases.
Objectives of The Split project
The Split project has the following goals:
- Widening of all interstate-to interstate ramps
- Adding one lane in each direction on Interstate 75
- Creating an auxiliary ramp system for traffic moving from Ringgold Road and the Welcome Center through the interchange
- Upgrading I-75 to the mainline route with I-24 ramps on the right side exiting and merging
After the interchange work is finished, the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) plans to carry out additional improvements.
The final design involves fewer bridges, only about 50% of the current number. This will lead to fewer bridge maintenance requirements in the future. Additionally, in making I-75 the main route through the interchange, the project is widening and modifying 2.7 miles of roadway, eliminating all entrances and exits from the left side onto the roads, according TDOT’s chief engineer Paul Degges.
Truck and car accidents resulting from poorly designed or maintained roadways can result in severe injuries and even death. Victims of these accidents deserve to pursue compensation for their injuries. At Wagner & Wagner Attorneys at Law, we are here to support you in your effort to recover maximum deserved compensation from any liable parties responsible for your injuries. Our team serves clients in Chattanooga and Cleveland, TN, in addition to North Georgia and the surrounding region. To arrange a free consultation about your injury case, give us a call today at 423.756.7923, or complete a contact form.