Two lanes of Interstate 5 remained closed north of Castaic on Tuesday due to damage sustained in last week’s Route Fire.
According to the California Department of Transportation’s District 7 Planned Lane Closures web report, lanes three and four of Interstate 5 stand at an indefinite, long-term closure as of Sunday at 8:01 a.m.
According to Caltrans and California Highway Patrol, all southbound lanes remain open.
“For the time being (the lanes will be closed) to further evaluate the integrity of the freeway lanes and two retaining walls damaged in the Route Fire that started on Aug. 31,” stated Caltrans in a press release on Twitter.
Structural and geotechnical engineers conducted field reviews on the damage the interstate sustained.
“Based upon initial visual reviews, some of the vertical steel columns are warped, wall tiebacks are broken and horizontal anchors into the dirt may have been damaged,” wrote Caltrans in the press release. “The cracks on the asphalt road where it meets the concrete shoulder have widened to 2 inches. Much of the timber lagging has fallen off of the walls while the remaining boards have burned.”
Engineers took samples of steel and concrete that will be tested in a Sacramento laboratory, according to Caltrans. The results, along with an analysis and discussion on permanent repairs, will determine the further decision on the reopening of the lanes.
Caltrans and CHP state that heavy traffic delays are expected and urge motorists to use the following alternate routes: State Route 126 to U.S. 101 or SR-14 to SR-138.