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Eastbound I-70 will be down to one lane at the Missouri River bridge near Rocheport for several days as emergency repairs are made to an expansion joint on the bridge.

Missouri Department of Transportation crews will begin making the repairs at 7 p.m. Saturday and will work 24 hours a day until the project is complete. MoDOT anticipates the emergency work lasting through May 8, but weather or other potential work delays could cause the project to go longer into the week.

Crews will start work on the eastbound driving lane. When that is completed, work will switch to the passing lane. Speed limits will be reduced to 45 mph while work takes place.

Motorists should expect significant congestion and delays, particularly during peak traffic times, such as morning and evening rush hours. If possible, drivers are encouraged to take alternative routes around the work zone, such as U.S. 50 and U.S. 36.

Expansion joints are what allow the bridge to expand and contract. Similar emergency repairs were made to a different expansion joint on the same bridge in March 2017. MoDOT officials said these joint breakdowns are the result of wear and tear on the aging bridge but the bridge is still safe for travel as crews make the repairs.

Westbound lanes on the bridge will remain open throughout the project and traffic is expected to flow normally.

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