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Superload makes unscheduled stopover in Wintersville

BIG CARGO — The superload, escorted by dozens of police officers and other supporting vehicles, rounds a bend in U.S. Route 22 Sunday, within view of the John Scott Highway overpass. Mechanical difficulties forced crews to leave it parked overnight on state Route 43 near State Park Motors. -- Linda Harris

WINTERSVILLE — Due to a mechanical issue, the slow-moving superload inching its way from Weirton to Hopedale had to make an unscheduled stopover in Wintersville Sunday.

Ohio Department of Transportation District 11 Public Information Officer Lauren Borell said the superload was parked overnight by State Park Motors on state Route 43 after the trailer broke and had to be welded,

“For safety purposes they only drive during the day, so it had to stay put for the night,” Borell said, pointing out the superload was expected to resume its journey to Hopedale at 9 a.m. today.

The superload, which measures 20-feet wide, 17-feet 4-inches tall, and 305-feet long and weighs in just shy of 970,000 pounds, got a late start Sunday due to the high winds that moved through the Tri-State Area in the early morning hours Sunday.

The convoy arrived at the Freedom Way-Main Street intersection in Weirton around 9 a.m., clearing Veterans Memorial Bridge a little more than an hour later.

Borell said the transport team is “paying special attention to public safety when crossing bridges and making turns on the superload’s route.” The transport team also is planning the move to avoid peak travel times to minimize the interference with traffic, she said.

The equipment is bound for the MarkWest fractionater in Hopedale.

Traffic is being controlled using rolling roadblocks. Motorists should expect delays and various intermittent ramp and loan closures, Borell said.

Additional superloads are scheduled to make the trek from Weirton to Hopedale Sunday and Jan. 26.

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