VANTAGE, Kittitas County — For crews from the Washington State Department of Transportation, it was a shock when they spotted a crack on the Vantage bridge the day they were scheduled to start repairs.

The inside lanes were closed on Monday while crews were scheduled to begin removing damaged barriers from the bridge, but workers discovered a hole on the bridge that required immediate attention. The hole was discovered in the eastbound outside lane and crews immediately began repairing the break. Officials say the hole was fixed on Monday and crews are scheduled to repair the damaged barriers on Tuesday after the hole is fixed.

“On Vantage Bridge the hole discovered in the outside EB lane yesterday has been patched and we are back with inside lanes closed to replace damaged barriers. There’s a 10 ft. width restriction and reduced speed limit in place. Please use caution traveling through the work zone,” WSDOT officials stated Tuesday morning.

“Crews were scheduled to fix barriers that were damaged from a collision a few weeks ago, where a semi-trailer rolled over. They noticed the hole and a WSDOT bridge crew from Union Gap responded, inspected the damage and fixed the hole using a concrete patch. To make a thorough repair, the crews essentially made the hole bigger to ensure there weren’t additional issues or failing material. They also made sure there were no structural issues before proceeding to fix the hole,” said David Mosley, Communications Manager, WSDOT South Central Region, told the Columbia Basin Herald Tuesday morning.

It is unknown why the hole happened, however, WSDOT notes that holes through bridge decks, like potholes in the highway, do periodically occur.

“A hole like this is a serious safety issue that our crews immediately respond to when identified,” said Mosley.