I-65 reopens near downtown after truck hits sign, spills load

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. —I-65 is back open, but slow near downtown Indianapolis Thursday after a truck crashed into a an overhead sign box.

The crash occurred around 10 a.m. According to Indiana State Police, a semi traveling in the northbound lanes of I-65 near the MLK interchange (116 mile marker) struck the overhead sign box, which sent that box into the southbound lanes of I-65. Click here for latest traffic conditions around Indy.

Initially INDOT closed all the southbound lanes, but later reopened a few lanes to keep traffic moving. Now, all the lanes are back open.

“There is significant cleanup with a crash like this.  Obviously crews responded quickly to remove the sign,” said INDOT spokesman Scott Manning.

After knocking over the sign, the truck then spilled it’s heavy metal payload, forcing crews to clear that cargo as well.

Still, it’s not clear why the truck driver lost control and hit the barrier wall in the first place.

“The overhead portion of the sign was not struck in this incident.  The truck hit the support posts on the side of the sign, attaching it to the concrete barrier wall,” said Manning.

Today’s crash is not the first time in recent months INDOT has had overhead signs damaged, but they say taxpayers don’t always pick up the tab.

In September a dump truck crashed into an electronic sign on I-70 when the driver forgot to lower the dump box.

In mid-December a crash damaged a message sign on 465 on Indy’s southside.

In early 2017, a semi carrying a mobile car crusher damaged the Rockville road overpass, costing over a million dollars to repair.

In all cases INDOT tries to seek reimbursement from trucking companies and insurance carriers.  Manning estimates replacing the downed sign Thursday may cost a couple hundred thousand dollars.

“The state does have a policy to pursue and recoup costs for damage to state property, which includes highway infrastructure,” said Manning.

The driver of the truck wasn’t seriously hurt and no other drivers were injured by the falling sign.

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