by: Tom Regan Updated:DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. —
The Georgia Department Of Transportation told Channel 2 Action News that the pavement collapse on Interstate 85 Monday that shut down two lanes of I-85 south has not happened in years on major metro Atlanta highways.
"It's been a very rare thing. I've been with the DOT for 14 years and I don't recall seeing one on the interstate collapse like this. So it's pretty rare that it happens," said DOT spokesman Mark McKinnon.
A broken water pipe and drain structure, along with heavy rain, washed away gravel under the road, causing the pavement to sink in the HOV lane on southbound I-85 north of Clairmont Road.
A DOT contracting crew closed two lanes and has repaired the water main and drain structure. Repaving will begin Wednesday morning and it's expected the lanes will reopen in the early afternoon.
DOT officials are advising motorists to use alternate routes. Some drivers told Channel 2's Tom Regan that they are already doing that.
"I already take the back roads, so for now, I'm definitely not taking the interstate,” said driver Nayana Nair.
A driver alerted authorities to the sinking pavement. Officials said they have no reports of vehicle damage related to the road collapse.