Bridge cleanup could start Sunday

MOUNT VERNON — Crews plan to begin removing the steel-and-concrete wreckage of the I-5 bridge from the Skagit River as early as Sunday.

Barges were scheduled on Saturday evening to bring in heavy cutting and lifting equipment to prepare for the work. Atkinson Construction, a Colorado firm with a branch in Renton, will supervise the work. The firm was hired by the state as its emergency contractor for the bridge cleanup and repair. The equipment includes a disassembled 150-ton crane that will be reassembled at the scene.

A section of the bridge fell into the river Thursday evening after girders were hit by a truck. Crews must remove the fallen span from the river before final inspections of the bridge and piers can be completed, according to the state Department of Transportation.

Once the inspections are complete, state engineers can begin designing a plan for repairing the bridge.

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