Above; I-5 bridge project-site, center; Global Diving and NTSB discuss project, below; diver preparing to rig wreckage for removal
Seattle— On Thursday, May 23, 2013 while traveling in the southbound lane of Interstate 5, a truck hauling a heavy and oversized load struck the support structure of a bridge crossing the Skagit River in Mt. Vernon, WA. The damage inflicted by the truck caused the 160’ long four lane span to collapse into the river below, completely severing the interstate. While the truck cleared the bridge before it collapsed, two passenger vehicles caught up in the failure of the bridge were destroyed with the passengers emerging shocked and scared, but alive. Interstate 5 is the major West coast transportation route between the US and Canada, serving more than 70,000 vehicles per day.
Global Diving & Salvage, Inc., under contract to Atkinson Construction, worked around the clock for 13 days under direction of WA Department of Transportation and the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) to provide diving and salvage services throughout the investigation and debris recovery phase of the project.
Dive operations in the river were complicated by spring runoff conditions resulting in high river currents. The operations included a detailed underwater survey of the downstream edge of the wreckage to ensure that it was safe to bring demolition equipment alongside, cutting and rigging the bridge wreckage and an underwater inspection to survey for damage to the bridge piers.
ABOUT GLOBAL DIVING & SALVAGE:
Global Diving & Salvage, Inc. is based in Seattle, WA with additional offices in the San Francisco Bay Area; Houston, Texas; and Anchorage, Alaska. Founded in 1979 as a diving and marine services company it currently specializes in deep diving to 1,000 feet. Core service lines include; marine construction, casualty response, and offshore support service activities. Diving capabilities include saturation dive systems, mixed gas surface diving, remotely operated vehicles, and emergency response.
Global also offers a variety of environmental services as well as engineering support for projects requiring technical underwater procedures and tooling. Global is currently involved with marine construction projects throughout the United States, perform salvage projects internationally, and support the offshore oil and gas industry in the Gulf of Mexico and Cook Inlet. For more information please visit:www.gdiving.com <http://www.gdiving.com> .