Debris in Sespe Creek Could Have Undermined Rail Bridge Supports Amid Storms

Written by Kyra Senese, Managing Editor
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The California storms that that knocked out a section of train bridge in early January over the Sespe Creek may cost $1.5 million to replace, according to a local news report.

According to county officials, the strong rain drove down significant debris, including trees from upstream, damaging and ultimately sweeping away the concrete pillars supporting the railroad on Jan. 10.

Approximately a quarter of the 450-foot bridge was destroyed, rendering that section useless as the track bowed over the mountain creek that leads to the Fillmore area.

According to Ken Beard, president and CEO of Sierra Northern Railway, one train each week on average has been running on the track from Fillmore to Ventura. Officials expect that the bridge could be repaired by late March or April.

Trains can operate on either side of the damaged bridge section, but not across it for an unknown period of time, Amanda Fagan, an official at the Ventura County Transportation Commission, told the VC Star. Officials did not yet know how long the bridge section would be out of use.