Six months after a fiery tanker truck crash shut down the tunnel connecting the 2 and 5 freeways, traffic was flowing once again on Friday. The repairs cost over $16 million but Caltrans says the tunnel is much improved. Reggie Kumar reports from Elysian Park for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 10, 2014.
A major Los Angeles freeway underpass reopened Friday around 10:45 a.m. after a tanker crashed and caught on fire, spilled fuel into the LA River and caused its closure for nearly six months.
The tunnel connecting the northbound 2 Freeway to the northbound 5 Freeway in Elysian Park near Glendale has been closed since July in order for crews to repair the damage to the tunnel’s concrete and support columns.
Repairs cost an estimated $16.5 million, which covered the replacement of damaged concrete as well as the addition of new barriers and graffiti-proof paint.
The tanker truck driver told authorities that he blew a tire before crashing. The fire was fueled by 8,500 gallons of gas carried by the tanker, according to firefighters at the time of the incident.
Approximately 300,000 motorists travel that stretch of 5 Freeway every day, officials said.