Monday, October 7, 2013

Scenes from the Swarm

Have you ever had people coming over for dinner in two hours and enlisted every member of your family to clean the house to get it ready? You work together to dust, vacuum, mop, take the trash out, clean the bathrooms (at least the guest bathroom), and clear away piles of clutter in a major cleaning frenzy, until BAM! The house sparkles!

That's sort of what happened yesterday at the I-5/I-10 interchange. It's called swarm maintenance. From 5 a.m. to noon, 200 Caltrans personnel and community service workers descended on the interchange to remove litter and graffiti, trim trees, clear weeds, repair guardrail and irrigation, re-stripe the roadway, re-lamp overhead lights, and replace signs. To complete all this work quickly and safely, we had to close interchange connectors and nearby ramps. Here's a look inside the swarm ...

Trash removal:


Striping:


Tree trimming:


Guardrail repair:


Sweeping:


The beauty of swarm maintenance is that it allows us to get a lot of work done in a very short amount of time, which means there are fewer maintenance closures and less inconvenience to motorists. Plus, it's safer. Since the interchange was closed, our workers were able to complete the operation without having to worry about getting hit by an errant vehicle, which happens all too frequently. 

You can help with swarm maintenance too! Don't throw trash on the freeway. We know YOU don't throw trash on the freeway. But for everyone else: Please don't throw trash on the freeway. Really. This is your home. And even if it's not, treat it like it is.