ROBESON COUNTY, N.C. (WBTW) — Crews are working to repair a hole in a bridge along I-95 in Robeson County near the South Carolina border.
Photos and video taken at about 7 p.m. Monday night show the damage on the southbound side of the highway near South of the Border, just before the state line.
Department of Transportation said that the hole was not there when workers did a routine maintenance check up at 10 a.m. Monday morning
Emanuel Hoppe was driving along 301 Monday night when he noticed the hole in overpass above him.
“We called 911 first,” said Hoppe. “They transferred us over to highway patrol and I’d say probably about 10 minutes after that [they arrived].”
However, NCDOT said that they were already on the scene doing a routine maintenance check up.
“[The workers] were in the right place at the right time to fix it immediately and get traffic off it,” said Andrew Barksdale, public relations officer for NCDOT.
Before help arrived, witnesses saw the hole only getting worse.
“Every time a car passed by like more rocks would fall and everything,” Hoppe said.
The North Carolina Department of Transportation filled the hole and used plywood to support the new concrete as it set. The hole measured three feet by three feet which is not typical of road damage.
“This one was more unusual,” Barksdale said. “Some of the ones that we’ve been temporary fixing were smaller.”
At about 2 p.m. on Tuesday, NCDOT returned to the scene to check on the cement and the plywood.
As for what caused the hole, NCDOT said it was a combination of things.
“It’s the wear and tear of the cars, but it’s also the age,” Barksdale said.
Fixing this overpass is a part of a preservation project of I-95 roadways. The project is set to be complete in Spring 2023.
When News13 asked North Carolina Highway Patrol about the hole in the interstate, they were unsure of the situation.
“I have no clue what you’re talking about. A hole in the highway?” NCHP communications officer, Chris Knox, said. “Nope. Nothing.”
The interstate is currently open and cars are running like normal.