Dam gates bound for California to cause delays on I-5 Wednesday

COTTAGE GROVE, Ore. - Massive gates bound for Folsom Dam near Sacramento will cause delays on Interstate 5 south Cottage Grove and north of Sutherlin on Wednesday night.

Between 10:45 p.m. and midnight, northbound traffic may be delayed up to 45 minutes.

Southbound traffic will be delayed approximately 30 minutes.

The gate measures 43 feet in length, about 23 feet in width and 14 1/2 feet in height.

The overall length of the truck and trailer hauling the gate is 142 feet. The truck, trailer and gate combined weigh more than 234,000 lbs.

The Oregon DOT is coordinating with Oregon-based carrier Gresham Transfer to safely transport the gates to California.

The gates were manufactured by Oregon Iron Works at their facility in Vancouver, Wash.

About the slowdown

"Rolling slowdowns" will be used in both directions on I-5.

Motorists entering the freeway between Sutherlin (Exit 136) and Cottage Grove (Exit 174) should watch for flaggers at each interchange on-ramp.

The slowdowns are necessary because the dam gate will be passing through a construction zone south of Cottage Grove in which the travel lanes are restricted to 19 feet in width, ODOT said.

Northbound traffic will be held while the gate is driven south at speeds of 20-30 mph through the 7-mile work zone.

This will be the fourth of 10 dam gates that pass through Oregon.

The first three were hauled down I-5 in May, before lane and width restrictions were implemented south of Cottage Grove.

The other gates will be transported later this summer.