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Buckled bridge closes Oklahoma Highway 33 near downtown Guthrie

Oklahoma transportation officials are watching other old bridges that could be affected by the heat after a bridge on State Highway 33 near downtown Guthrie buckled.
by Bryan Painter Modified: August 2, 2012 at 10:14 pm •  Published: August 2, 2012
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— A well-traveled old bridge on State Highway 33 near downtown Guthrie has buckled under the summer heat.

The bridge, in the Cottonwood Creek area, was closed between 7 and 8 p.m. Wednesday and is expected to be closed until before rush hour Friday afternoon, said Terri Angier, state Transportation Department spokeswoman.

“The two panels basically expanded at the joint and are pushing at each other, so they actually come up a few inches on the roadway,” Angier said Thursday. “Heat, temperatures like this, do cause older bridges, older pavement, to do this type of buckling before, of course, good pavement.”

The temperature hit 113 degrees Wednesday at Guthrie, according to the Oklahoma Mesonet weather network.

Angier said transportation officials watch areas that might be especially susceptible because of the age of the roadways.

“The trick is: It is really hard to predict,” she said. “Some of them go through a few weeks of buildup with high temperatures; some of them immediately do it because they've already gone through the buildup cycle with the previous heat wave.”

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by Bryan Painter
Assistant Local Editor
Bryan Painter, assistant local editor, has 31 years’ experience in journalism, including 22 years with the state's largest newspaper, The Oklahoman. In that time he has covered such events as the April 19, 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah...
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