UPDATE: All lanes with the exception of the fast lane of eastbound 24 were reopened at about 3:20 p.m. No further closures expected.
A morning accident involving a crane and nearby power lines led to a brief power outage for some Lafayette residents and closure of some lanes early Monday – but the California Highway Patrol is warning that more closures are yet to come and that motorists should stay away from Highway 24 entirely.
“These rolling Highway 24 closures are required to repair a downed power line caused when the contractors operating the crane for our Lafayette track work, hit the power line with the crane causing it to fall,” BART said in a release issued following the accident.
Overhead wires were struck and damaged at 5:31 a.m. on SR24 westbound, according to the CHP and corrective action – including lane closures and emergency repair work were completed in the early morning hours.
The crane was initially thought to have belonged to PG&E, but it was later determined that BART brought the 265-ton crane to Lafayette in order to “replace critical track components.” Caltrans and BART are monitoring the closures to limit driving delays to under 30 minutes. Also free buses replace trains Orinda-Walnut Creek; 40+ minute delays, BART said in a release.
Officials announced that started at noon today, Monday, intermittent closures of SR24 in both direction will occur for approximately 30 minutes for planned track upgrades. This closure will take place between Oak Hill Rd and Pleasant Hill Rd on eastbound SR-24 and between Pleasant Hill Rd and Acalanes Rd on westbound SR-24.
Detour signs and routes will be posted for motorists to follow, for exiting the freeway and returning to it. These temporary closures will occur numerous times, each lasting approximately 30 minutes for the complete closure and then completely open again for approximately an hour, before starting the process over until the emergency work is complete.
The UPSHOT: AVOID SR24 if possible as major delays are expected and find alternate routes (I-80 to SR-4 and vice versa or I-680 to I-580 and vice versa).