DICKSON CITY – It was a slow go for drivers through the Dickson City area of Interstate 81 again Monday. PennDOT closed one lane to fix a massive three foot by four foot hole on the bridge over North Main Avenue.
“It was sort of crumbling from underneath and so once it opened up you could see the extent of how large it was,” said PennDOT Spokesman James May.
The emergency repairs backed up traffic for miles early as the work week began. This latest big backup didn’t surprise drivers but the size of the pothole did.
“A little bit, that’s a big hole, I wouldn’t want to go into it myself,” said Devin Trego of Scranton.
Trego says the emergency repairs will make her late to her appointment in Montrose.
“It makes me sad that what ends up happening is because we don’t take care of our infrastructure consistently that we have to do it kind of all at once,” said Trego.
PennDOT says workers quickly cleaned out the massive hole that was right above a section of bridge on I-81 north.
Once the repairs were made on the Main Avenue bridge, one lane of 81 north still remained closed for several hours while the concrete hardened.
PennDOT is in the middle of a project to replace the troubled bridge over Main Avenue. The hole opened up on the left lane just about a month before crews were scheduled to work on that side of the bridge, work that would prevent situations like this.
“There have been a lot of emergency repairs on that and this is the exact reason why now we’re going out and making the permanent repairs to the bridge,” said May.
John Caruso travels this stretch of road often and says he’s just learned to detour and deal.
“It’s frustrating but what are you going to do? I’ve learned to live with it. I don’t get aggravated anymore I did it long enough so I learn to live with it,” said Caruso.
PennDOT says the Main Avenue bridge replacement project on 81 is scheduled to be complete by the end of next summer. The project started about a year and a half ago in the spring of 2012.