By Railfan & Railroad Staff
TEMPE, Ariz. — Union Pacific crews are working “around the clock” to repair a bridge on its line to Phonix after it collapsed during a derailment last week. Railroad officials are telling customers that they expect repairs to the bridge near Tempe to take at least another week.
The derailment occurred on July 29 as a manifest freight train was crossing a century-old bridge over Tempe Town Lake. The bridge caught fire and at least one span collapsed. UP has rerouted some traffic in the area due to the bridge collapse but it was warning customers to expect delays of upwards of five days for shipments already en route. The railroad issued a temporary embargo to all other shipments until the bridge can be repaired.
“All debris and damaged rail equipment have been removed and repairs to the bridge are well underway. We are currently anticipating reopening the bridge the end of next week,” railroad officials wrote in a customer advisory. “To assist in working off the backlog, we also plan to stage inbound trains at strategic locations to expedite delivery to customers once the bridge has reopened.”