January 10, 2018-A failed utility pole left thousands of motorists stuck on Interstate 80/94 and thousands more scrambling to get around on arterial roads early this morning. Indiana State Police released a statement saying all lanes of I-80/94 were closed in both directions. Traffic was diverted at Grant Street and Cline Avenue. This left city streets to handle the traffic from one of the nation’s busiest interstates. To make matters worse, traffic control signals were out throughout Gary and Hessville as a result of two, apparently unrelated, downed power lines. Nipsco’s Power Outage Map shows over 5,000 Gary residents are still without power at this time. Just 18 residents in Hammond’s 46323 zip code are without power according to the map.
Two power lines could be clearly seen strewn across the interstate. A downed wooden utility pole lay cracked and smoking on the side of the road.