Downed Power Poles Repaired, I-8 Reopens

The freeway in El Cajon will be closed again at midnight

Both directions of Interstate 8 in San Diego's East County reopened Thursday following a lengthy shutdown after crews had to repair several downed power poles damaged one day prior.

As of 6:40 a.m. Thanksgiving Day, Caltrans officials confirmed all lanes of westbound I-8 at Greenfield Drive and the westbound I-8 on-ramp from Greenfield Drive in El Cajon had reopened to traffic.

At approximately 1:20 a.m. Wednesday, a large cylinder was being towed on eastbound I-8 near 2nd Street and Broadway. Investigators say the cylinder snagged on a power line, causing several power poles to snap in half south of I-8.

The downed power poles led to some outages in the area, including a power outage at a nearby grocery store.

Following the accident, officials temporarily shut down the freeway from 2nd Street to Greenfield Drive, but later reopened the road to let small cars and trucks through.

By 1 p.m. Wednesday, a portion of I-8 had been reopened, officials said. However, the freeway be completely shut down starting at 11:30 p.m. Wednesday until 6 a.m. Thursday as SDG&E crews completed repairs to the lines. El Cajon police asked driver to avoid the area.

As of 3 p.m., there were no restrictions on travel on I-8 when all lanes and on and off-ramps were reopened.

During the midnight closure, CHP officials said eastbound I-8 traffic would be diverted to 2nd Street and Greenfield Drive. To re-enter eastbound I-8 from that detour, turn right on Greenfield Drive.

Meanwhile, those who come up on the closures while traveling on westbound I-8 can exit Lake Jennings Park Road, turn right and take southbound State Route 67 to get themselves to either westbound State Route 52 or westbound I-8. Westbound I-8 drivers could also opt to take the Greenfield Drive exit, turn right to 2nd Street and then left on 2nd Street to re-enter westbound I-8.

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