PennDOT officials are shutting down the bridge after discovering structural damage.
PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Highway drivers in Philadelphia are facing another headache on the roads as the ramp from the Roosevelt Expressway to I-76 West will be closed until further notice.
PennDOT officials shut down the bridge after discovering structural damage to beams at the base of the bridge.
They said the damage was caused by a cargo container, carried by a truck, that slammed into it on Tuesday afternoon.
Harold Windisch, a PennDOT engineer, told Action News that inspectors and a bridge team were out out assessing damage to the bridge late Tuesday and worked through the night to figure out the necessary repairs.
"Typically, it's plating of the damaged areas," Windisch said. "We may have to do some heat straightening but we'll no more."
A PennDOT spokesperson told Action News that its design team was currently working on repairs and that it had reached out to fabricator for materials. They added that PennDOT would know more about how long the ramp would be closed "in the next day or two."
In the meantime, drivers can expect backups and delays in that area.
Traffic conditions to avoid parts of the Roosevelt Expressway, specifically the southbound ramp to westbound I-76 and City Avenue, will get worse before they get better. This could mean extra traffic on Ridge Avenue, Kelly Drive and Montgomery Drive to name a few.
Drivers will now be directed to use eastbound I-76, Montgomery Avenue and westbound I-76 until further notice -- which is already an area that sees a good amount of traffic on any given morning.
The news was a tough pill to swallow for Terrance Ray who said he expected his 20-minute commute to work from the Logan section of the city to double-certainly if the closure extended pass the holiday season, when more drivers are expected to be on the roads.
"I'm going to have to leave the house earlier than usual," Ray said. "It's going to be frustrating that's all. I'm just trying to get prepared for it."
Kevin Word said he was already thinking about his alternate route to try to avoid as many delays as possible on his morning and evening commutes.
"I have to take the back streets and try to cope with it the best way I can," Word said.
For William Pashak who has driven limousines for 40 years, the closure is a nuisance. He said he didn't think there were enough roads in the area to handle the volume of traffic being forced around the ramp closure. Despite that, he said he preferred drivers be safe than sorry.
"No matter what the people say, you fix it because then if something happens somebody gets killed-god forbid-what happens then, Pashak said.
The ramp will remain closed until a team of engineers and contractors can make the necessary repairs. It is unclear how long the repairs will take.
Use 6abc's traffic map for the latest in traffic updates.