Burrard Bridge construction blows out bus tires
Bus routes have had to be rerouted and Vancouver City Hall says its contractor will have to pick up the tab through insurance after between 20 and 27 bus tires popped when crossing the bridge. (JASON LANG/ 24 HOURS)
Riders face longer trips as all buses crossing the Burrard Street Bridge have been rerouted indefinitely after 20 coaches had their tires burst on the span due to construction “anchor” bolts sticking out of the deck.
According to TransLink and the City of Vancouver, there were no injuries caused by the blowouts. But for safety reasons, the No. 44, 22 and 2 buses have been detoured to Granville Street Bridge, TransLink’s Jiana Ling said Thursday.
Signage is posted with reroute information at affected stops, she said.
One upset passenger said she had to miss a medical appointment booked weeks in advance because of the detour.
Eleanor Brockenshire is glad TransLink has changed the route, but said the situation needs to be fixed soon.
“TransLink — I agree with their point. It’s unsafe for bus drivers and riders … if you have a big bus with people, you can see how the tires would blow because the bolts would pierce the rubber,” she said.
According to the city, one passenger vehicle was also damaged due to the construction. In a statement, city hall said its employees have reported up to 27 bus tires being damaged.
It said there were steel plates installed — and anchored — over bridge joints city contractors are replacing as part of structural repairs.
“(On Wednesday), it was found that traffic travelling over the plates had caused some of the anchors to rise up,” the city said.
“In response to this, we have switched to a different anchor type that can handle an even greater capacity of traffic.”
The city said there have been no further issues since the switch, but couldn’t say how much stronger the new bolts were. The damage to buses is expected to be covered by the contractor Graham Group’s insurance, the city said.
Graham said it has been told by the city not to comment on the matter.