WINCHESTER — An inspection of the bridge along Millwood Pike over Interstate 81, near Apple Blossom Mall, is prompting traffic to be delayed and rerouted.

Sandy Myers, Staunton District spokeswoman for the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT), said the right southbound lane on I-81 and the southbound ramp at Exit 313 are closed, as is one lane of eastbound Millwood Pike.

"Westbound is fine" and open for travel, Myers said.

Police scanner chatter indicated that traffic from the mall wasn't being allowed onto Millwood.

At mid-afternoon, Myers didn't yet know full details of the situation. She said, however, that a bridge inspector earlier in the day noticed something of concern as heavy trucks were crossing the bridge.

The inspector determined that a more detailed inspection was necessary right away, and another inspector had been summoned to the scene, Myers said.

"There's an area of concern they want to look at. I don't know if there's a problem (with the bridge) yet," she said.

But "we haven't heard anything to even remotely indicate that the bridge is in danger of collapsing," she emphasized.

Myers noted that VDOT has contractors ready around the clock to respond to any bridge emergencies and make immediate repairs.

Further details of the ongoing I-81 bridge situation will be reported as they are made available to The Winchester Star.

— Contact Mickey Powell at mpowell@winchesterstar.com

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