Wednesday, July 29, 2020

1912 or 1915 UP/SP Bridge over Temp Town Lake in Tempe, AZ and the UP destruction of said bridge

(Bridge Hunter; no Historic Bridges; HAERSatellite)

The sources seem to be about 50/50 concerning the construction date of 1912 vs. 1915.

Second video in azfamily
[The derailment of about 10 cars caused the south (right side) span to collapse and a fire to break out.]
"Tempe officials said one of the derailed cars contained cyclohexanone, a pale and oily liquid that is toxic and flammable. It's used to make nylon and paint remover. HAZMAT crews placed a foam layer over the car to keep it cool and prevent any chemical vapors. The chemical is leaking into a storm drain that goes into the riverbed on the west side of the dam. Crews are testing the area and working to stop the leak. The other two cars on the train track were transporting chemicals but neither are a hazardous concern right now, the City said. It's unclear what impact the derailment will have on the wildlife in the area.
The cars that burned for hours were carrying lumber, some of which fell into the lake."
No one was injured. But the collapsed span was over a highway, so UP really lucked out.
[There is s truss span crumpled up under and around those covered hoppers.]
A significant test of the range of a snorkel.

The bridge had its annual inspection on July 9. UP had derailed a dozen cars on this bridge just last June 26. The temperature was 115. But I assume the rails are used to temperatures like that. [azfamily] I saved 12 posts from Facebook about this derailment. But I'm not going to look at any of them. I'm happy with the amount of information in this azfamily page that Bridge Hunter referenced.

This was when I realized that the collapsed span was over a highway.
Street View
And UP was lucky that their wood trestle escaped the fire. It looks like some utilities lost their  conduits.
Street View
Someone updated Bridge Hunter on the same day of the derailment. According to a comment, the bridge carries pipelines.
Bridge Hunter Maricopa County Index


1. Southern Pacific Railroad Bridge, Ash Avenue Bridge and Mill Avenue Bridge from Tempe Butte looking northwest. - Arizona Eastern Railroad Bridge, Spanning Salt River, Tempe, Maricopa County, AZ

[The first dam to create a lake was not built until 1999. The current dam was built in 2016. [DeBruler]]
This photo appears to have been taken after a rain.. This bridge is the only bridge that has survived all of the Salt River floods since 1915.
HAER ARIZ,7-TEMP,3--6 from az0253

6. Photocopy of photograph [original print located at Arizona Photographic Associates, Inc., Phoenix, Arizona]. Photographer: Herb McLaughlin, circa. 1965 AERIAL VIEW, LOOKING SOUTHEAST TOWARD TEMPE BUTTE, SHOWING, FROM TOP, MILL AVENUE BRIDGE, ASH AVENUE BRIDGE, AND SOUTHERN PACIFIC RAILROAD BRIDGE - Ash Avenue Bridge, Spanning Salt River at Foot of Ash Avenue, Tempe, Maricopa County, AZ

HAER ARIZ,7-TEMP,3--14 from az0253

14. Photocopy of photograph [original print located at University Archives, Hayden Library, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona]. Photographer unknown, 1902 VIEW SHOWING TRAIN WRECK ON MARICOPA AND PHOENIX RAILROAD CAUSED BY BRIDGE FAILURE RESULTING FROM FLOOD DAMAGE - Ash Avenue Bridge, Spanning Salt River at Foot of Ash Avenue, Tempe, Maricopa County, AZ

Photo by Police Chief Sylvia Moir via DailyMail

safe_image for Arizona Corporation Commission Approves Tempe Railroad BridgeJoe Cayer They actually opened the bridge last night! [Aug 12, 2020] The flood of rail traffic is about to begin...Frank Loulan I looked at the KJZZ news report and they just reported yesterday afternoon that the AZ Corporation Commission had given approval for the reconstruction of the bridge. Clearly the rebuilding didn't happen LITERALLY in a matter of hours. Either they were very slow in reporting or UP had been working on it all along prior to receiving permission from the ACC to rebuild!!John Ciolli Bill Chrisman it's 10mph right now. I was the 3rd train across it last night/morning. Frank Loulan I think you are correct, Charlie, as the previous speed limit was only 15 MPH around that curve on the north side of the bridge as I recall. (I still have some old timetables around the house here somewhere, but can't lay my hands on one at the moment to confirm that.)

Bill Neill shared
You may have seen coverage of this July 29 derailment and fire on the Union Pacific Railroad's Tempe bridge. Several cars of a Tucson-Phoenix train derailed on the approach to the south end of the bridge with several plunging onto the road and parkway below. No one was injured, but the south end of the superstructure was so badly damaged that UP decided to blow a portion of the bridge up and rebuild it rather than attempting to extricate the remaining derailed cars.

safe_image for Regulators approve repair of Tempe Town Lake bridge damaged by train derailment
The bridge is part of a spur route off UP’s California-to-Texas main line across southern Arizona, and the railroad said it needed to reconstruct the bridge to restore service to metro Phoenix. Since the derailment, UP has routed some of its freight trains into metro Phoenix by using a Burlington Northern Santa Fe branch line that connects with the competing railroad’s main line across northern Arizona. The railroad will pay for reconstructing the bridge and the damaged parkway, the commission said. [And, of course, the NTSB is still investigating.]
Majdi Abbas It's done already [Aug 14, 2020] and taking traffic. [payware of 7, an interesting video of the rebuild including the energetic felling on Day 5 of a span with freight cars still on it popped up] "The reopening came two weeks after a portion of the bridge collapsed on July 29 when a freight train derailed, sending a few cars to the ground below. "
Chad Pendarvis commented
Shawn Smith posted five photos with the comment: "UPRR derailment, Tempe AZ."





Sam Beck commented
[The regulators would not allow a pylon in the median. They forced UP to span the entire parkway. The concrete beam trestle replaced the truss that was blown up.]

105 photos of the cleanup and then fire

safe_image for NTSB releases preliminary report on July's Tempe train derailment[The FBI fournd no criminal activity, but the cause of the derailment is still under investigation. The damage is estimated at between $8-10 million.]

Another report

Curtiss Pool provided a link for a share
Travis Willhoite: The chemical in the tank car had a flash point of 116 degrees Fahrenheit and it was 118 when we got there it was pretty nerve racking.
Scott Thomas: I was there three weeks ago [that would be Oct 12] and not one trace of damage left.
Mark Walls: I was the Engineer.
They haven’t said officially but I heard it was the rail. I believe it had just been fixed previously because there had been a slow order right there a few days earlier.

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