2/12 12:30 p.m. UPDATE: VDOT said Wednesday that two metal ceiling panels at the tunnel opening eastbound were misaligned. The decision was made to close the tunnels so engineers to thoroughly evaluate the panel system to ensure it was secure and not compromised. When the inspection and evaluation were complete, crews realigned and reinforced panel attachments for enhanced safety. At no point did tiles or panels fall or detach from the ceiling, officials stressed.
VDOT engineers are currently evaluating the panels at this location to determine if additional action is required to secure or remove any panels.
7:40 p.m. UPDATE: Interstate 64 eastbound at the Hampton Roads Bridge Tunnel is now open.
After inspectors discovered two metal panels out of position at the tunnel entry, VDOT immediately closed I-64 eastbound at the HRBT to reattach the panels to the concrete ceiling.
No significant structural damage was reported.
HAMPTON- The Virginia Department of Transportation has closed Interstate 64 eastbound at the Hampton Roads Bridge Tunnel for emergency maintenance work.
VDOT says two sheets of metal attached to the ceiling of the tunnel were slightly out of position. HRBT was immediately closed to evaluate the panels and surrounding area.
Driver Harley T. Wells tells 13News Now that some sort of debris fell from the tunnel and hit his F-250 truck, causing a 12-inch gash on the front of the truck.
Traffic is being detoured off at exit 268 (Mallory Street) in Hampton. Drivers are being urged to used I-664 to cross over from the peninsula.
The road closure is expected to last through Tuesday's rush hour.
Stay with 13NewsNow and wvec.com for the latest information on this developing story.