Heartbreak Bridge

Can't we just go around it?

Can’t we just go around it?

It’s the final Picture Day Wednesday of 2016, and this time I’ll let the a professional provide the images for your viewing pleasure…picture day

As you may recall from last week’s PD post, my calendar for late December was chock full of doctor appointments I had to either attend or chauffeur someone else to.  There was a lone appointment this week, which was my regular doctor appointment scheduled for this morning.  As with most of the medical professionals I must visit, this doctor was located in that part of the St. Louis area we like to call North County.  There is only one bridge that connects North County to my part of Illinois, and it’s likely only there because that’s where Interstate 270 passes through.  And as you may have guessed by now… that little truck fire you see up there just happened to occur on that bridge this morning…

Yeah, that's the cab of the truck there hanging off the edge of the bridge and engulfed in flames.  Somehow, the driver escaped that with his life.

Yeah, that’s the cab of the truck there hanging off the edge of the bridge and on fire. Somehow, the driver escaped that with his life.

The photos I’m providing come from this article on the Belleville News-Democrat website.  A semi truck hit the guard rail on the westbound (my direction) lanes of the bridge across the Mississippi River and burst into flames around 5:30 this morning.  I-270 was shut down in both directions at the last exits on either side of the river.  I was fortunate enough to hear about the accident on the way home from work, and when I found conflicting information on whether traffic was being allowed across again, decided better safe than sorry and left about 20 minutes earlier just in case I had to take the scenic route (About 20 miles out of my way) up through Alton to the north.  Yep, it was still shut down… so a 25 minute trip for a stupid ass doctor appointment turned into a 50 minute adventure…

Despite how it might look, that's still a loooooong way down off that bridge.

Despite how it might appear, that’s still a loooooong way down off that bridge.

Getting home wasn’t a problem since the eastbound lanes were re-opened long before westbound traffic was finally allowed back across after about 5 hours.  But chalk it up to another case of “it figures.”  All that money spent to recently add a FIFTH bridge to get from Illinois to downtown St. Louis, and here we still are with just a single reasonable option to get to the northern suburbs.  A single option that is notorious for frequent road construction and/or traffic-snarling bridge inspections even when it doesn’t have 18-wheelers aflame hanging off its guardrails…

You tell me how the driver escaped from there before rescue crews showed up...

You tell me how the driver escaped from there before rescue crews showed up…

I’ll be back with something less stressful next Wednesday…. and next year!


About evilsquirrel13

Bored former 30-something who has nothing better to do with his life than draw cartoon squirrels.
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14 Responses to Heartbreak Bridge

  1. Holy mackerel!!! Not a great way to wrap up the year hanging by a muffler on the I-270. Hope all the dr. appointments and shuttlings went better for you. Warm wishes for a better 2017 for all.

    • Since life doesn’t work the same way it does in cartoons, I’d imagine hanging by a muffler off a bridge isn’t as easy as it sounds. I’ll be interested to see just how the driver escaped that predicament…

  2. Merbear74 says:

    Yikes! Miracles do happen, the proof is right there!

  3. WOW…..now that driver was one lucky guy! Glad you heard about this before getting stuck in horrible traffic.


    • I usually don’t find out something’s going on until I get to the entrance ramp and notice the traffic is really not moving… and by then, it’s way too late to take the scenic detour. This would be the one moment where a flying car might actually make sense…

  4. ody N biskit….hole lee shitz….that dood had guardian angelz, N we dunno who else lookin out for him……cranbeeereez ~~~~~~~ thatz feerce ~~~~~~

    hope de dood in red waz veree good two everee one ☺☺☺♥♥♥

  5. It’s everywhere, you know? They never fix it until they have a catastrophe. We still haven’t dealt with the bad tracks and inadequate braking and safety systems on our commuter rails. If we have another bad winter, this time people will die. I don’t get it. Everyone talks about how important infrastructure is, but they are never willing to put any money into making it happen. They just find someone to blame, then wash, rinse, and repeat.

    Great pictures, no matter who took them!

    • They actually have been very vigilant about inspecting the bridge regularly ever since that catastrophe in Minneapolis about a decade ago, but that just opens up the problem that there is no real viable alternative to that bridge when it’s out of commission for stuff like this. The old Route 66 bridge is just a few hundred feet south of this one, and though it’s been closed to traffic for as long as I’ve been alive, it’s still standing and rather than try to refurbish and reopen it, they turned it into a nature/bike trail. I’ll need to remember to bring my camera next time and try and snap a shot of it, since the story of that bridge would be a good Wednesday post in itself…

  6. draliman says:

    It’s a Christmas miracle!

  7. What excitement! Glad everyone was ok.

  8. Ladybuggz says:

    Wow! That guy had on his lucky socks that day!! Happy New Years Bill !!! 🙂 T.

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