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Truckers React to I-5 Bridge Collapse North Of Seattle

Ruby DeLuna

Thursday night's bridge collapse has put a spotlight on truckers who carry oversized loads. Preliminary reports suggest that a truck that clipped a bridge support is what caused the spectacular collapse.

At Donna’s Truck Stop in Marysville, drivers talked about how the accident would affect them. With the bridge out of commission and traffic being rerouted, many drivers worried about how the closure would add more time to their trips.

Mike Crooker just came back from a delivery in Bow, about 20 miles north of Mt. Vernon. He said it wasn’t as bad as he thought. “Going up there it added 15 to 20 minutes on to the trip,” he said. “Coming back it added about 35 [minutes],  I think."

And it’s not just time — there are fuel costs to worry about as well. Driver Mike Labonte said his company sends up to six trucks to Canada everyday. He wants to see the government invest more in roads. “I don’t think we need to pay more taxes," he said. "I think they need to spend the money they get more wisely.”

A permanent bridge replacement could cost as much as $15 million. The feds have authorized $1 million. State officials are hoping for additional funds. Until then, drivers are adjusting their schedules.

Year started with KUOW: 1994