N. Arizona highway closed due to pavement buckle


by The Associated Press and Catherine Holland

Video report by Kim Quintero

Posted on February 20, 2013 at 8:20 AM

Updated Sunday, Nov 24 at 1:00 AM

Map: Highway closed

View larger map

PAGE, Ariz. (AP) -- A stretch of U.S. 89 in northern Arizona is closed in both directions because of a pavement problem about 25 miles south of Page.

The Arizona Department of Transportation says traffic will detour around the closure by using U.S. 160 and State Route 98, adding 45 miles of driving.

Northbound traffic on U.S. 89 can't go past U.S. 89A, which takes traffic west toward Jacob Lake. Southbound traffic on U.S. 89 can't go past the junction with State Route 98 in Page.

ADOT says what caused a 150-foot section of pavement to buckle shortly after 5:30 a.m. is not related to the weather and might be what ADOT calls a "geologic event."

"We were altered because we had two separate collisions, northbound and southbound, where this occurred," Department of Public Safety spokesman Bart Graves said. "Fortunately, there were minor injuries, believe it or not."

According to ADOT, it isn't known how long the stretch of U.S. 89 will remain closed south of Page.

"It'll probably be an extended closure," Graves said, advising drivers to postpone their trips is they can. I imagine ADOT will be working on that for quite awhile."

ADOT crews are on scene and are deploying geotechnical engineers to investigate