PORTLAND – An on-ramp to Highway 217 from Interstate 5 has seen 24 crashes in the last six weeks and while the Oregon Department of Transportation has said it knows about the problem, it has yet to make major changes.
Three crashes were reported Thursday and two more were reported Friday on-ramp from Interstate 5 northbound to Highway 217 in Tigard. The ramp has been the site of 24 crashes in the last six weeks, according to Tigard police.
A problem with the roadway is partly to blame, said Oregon Department of Transportation spokesman Don Hamilton. He said a bridge joint has moved about a half-inch out of place.
It’s causing some drivers to spin out and crash in the left lane of the flyover ramp. ODOT said they are aware of the displaced bridge joint but that it wouldn't be a problems if drivers were going the speed limit.
"Motorists who are doing 35 miles an hour, the advisory speed in this stretch of road, shouldn't have any problems along here,” Hamilton said. “The only cars that are having this problem right now are the ones exceeding that 35 mile an hour advisory speed.”
About 30 minutes after a crash on the ramp Friday morning was cleared, another one was reported.
Hamilton said ODOT is working to find a solution to the problem. About 51,000 vehicles use the ramp each day. They also plan to put up more signs to caution drivers.
ODOT inspects bridges and overpasses every two years and the I-5 ramp to Highway 217 easily passed its last inspection.
KGW Reporter Wayne Havrelly contributed to this report.