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Hospitals Concerned About 405 Freeway Closure

LOS ANGELES (CBS) — Next month's shutdown of the 405 Freeway is prompting concerns about patient safety at local hospitals.

Posie Carpenter of Santa Monica-UCLA Medical Center says there is a serious gap in the planning and preparation for the closure, which could cause delays for employees and endanger the lives of patients.

"They really have no idea what the situation is going to be," Carpenter says. "It could be like the Olympics and everybody stays home and all goes well. But I sure wouldn't want to stake the life of my mother or father on that."

Carpenter told KNX 1070 she's "very concerned" about what the shutdown would do to limit access to the hospital.


"Each shift during the course of the closure which there are six shifts we require about 1,500 physicians and staff to care for our patients and to provide for emergency care for those patients who would be brought to us," said Carpenter.

On July 15, Caltrans will close the 405 Freeway for 53 hours while workers demolish a bridge.

Southbound lanes will be closed for four miles between the 101 Freeway and Getty Center Drive. Northbound lanes will be closed for 10 miles between Interstate 10 and the 101 Freeway.

Ramps are set to begin shutting down on Friday, July 15, at 7 p.m. Later that night, between 9 p.m. and midnight, all freeway lanes will close.

Caltrans believes it will complete the work on Monday, July 18, at 5 a.m.

California Highway Patrol and Caltrans say that drivers should expect delays during that time.

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