Fire closes B.C.'s Pattullo bridge
With a fire still smouldering this morning on the south end of the Pattullo Bridge, commuters are being warned the major traffic artery will be closed for days – or more.
Wooden beams, some dating back to 1937, caught fire early Sunday morning on the Surrey end of the bridge. The cause of the fire has not been determined and damage is being assessed by technical engineers today to determine what it will take to make the bridge safe for traffic again.
“The fire is not out, it's still smouldering under the asphalt layer,” said Translink spokesman Ken Hardie, speaking in a telephone interview from the scene of the fire.
“Right now the structure is not safe. What we have to find out if it can be braced or if it has to be knocked down. If it has to be knocked down, the bridge could be out of action for a month.”
The Pattullo Bridge normally carries about 80,000 vehicles a day. That traffic will now be diverted either to the Port Mann or Alex Fraser bridges over the Fraser River, or on the Surrey SkyTrain.
Mr. Hardie said Translink is looking at getting extra transit services in place before Monday morning.