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Power line repair prompts intermittent highway closures

A crane performing work on BART tracks in Lafayette, Calif. clipped power lines that fell onto Highway 24 Monday, September 2, 2019. Traffic was halted for about an hour but power remains out for 114 customers nearby.

The California Highway Patrol is asking motorists to avoid Highway 24 in the Lafayette area this afternoon while repairs are made to power lines damaged earlier in a crane accident.

Starting at noon, there will be intermittent closures on Highway 24 to repair overhead lines knocked down about 5:30 a.m. by a crane working on BART tracks in Lafayette.

The downed lines forced the closure of westbound 24 for about an hour early Monday morning.

The afternoon closures will occur for 30 minutes at a time on both directions of the freeway between Oak Hill and Pleasant Hill roads on eastbound 24 and between Pleasant Hill and Acalanes roads on westbound 24. Detour signs and routes will be posted for motorists to follow, for exiting the freeway and returning to it, the CHP said.

The 30-minute temporary closures will be repeated, followed by the freeway opening for an hour, before starting the process over until the emergency work is completed.

Motorists are asked to avoid the freeway if possible and find alternate routes, such as Interstate Highway 80 to State Route 4 or Interstate Highway 680 to Interstate Highway.

The crane accident knocked out power to the area, with 725 customers initially affected. As of 9:45 a.m., 114 customers were still without power in Lafayette. Restoration of power is expected by 6 p.m., according to PG&E.

During the Labor Day holiday weekend, BART’s Measure RR-funded track work is underway and buses instead of BART trains are providing service between Walnut Creek and Orinda.

BART trains are expected to resume normal service and schedules on Tuesday morning, officials said.

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