Major crash closes I-44 at Springfield, Mo.

GREENE COUNTY, Mo. — MoDOT is reporting a major crash has closed I-44 west near the 71 mile marker on Tuesday morning about 5:40 a.m.

Westbound lanes are being diverted off I-44 at Chestnut Expressway, 72 mile marker.

The closure is estimated at 5-6 hour clean-up.

We are working to determine details of the crash that involved a tractor trailer and other vehicles.

Willard Fire, Republic Fire and Springfield Fire were on scene according to initial reports.



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MoDOT completes the S Rangeline overpass 23 days early

JOPLIN, Mo. — What one person called, “A Christmas miracle” in an online comment, is really a Thanksgiving miracle!

The South Rangeline overpass of the Kansas City Southern Railroad was open to all traffic Wednesday, November 23 at 11:52 a.m.

Range Line Bridge Replacement Fact Sheet_4

The project completes early. 23 days early.

The estimated completion was Dec 16. However good weather for construction and priority planning by MoDOT officials achieved the early opening.

MoDOT inspectors tell us on site there are still things to complete outside of the roadway, cosmetic issues like sod and dirt work.

Final inspections were completed in the past week. Painters were spotted on the bridge yesterday and this morning as tipsters alerted us that the opening could be close.

Now accessible is the newly relocated Maria’s Restaurant, in the former Pacific Rim building, across from Import Warehouse.

This is a breaking news story, stay with Joplin News First on KOAM News Now as we continue to cover news and important stories where you live. Scroll below and sign up for our JLNews email list so you don’t miss an article.



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Rangeline bridge construction progress, large girders arrive to construction site

JOPLIN, Mo. — Wednesday evening October 19, 2022 we caught numerous tractor trailers arriving with huge beams to the Rangeline Bridge construction site.

Arriving from the south we learn these huge beams were made of concrete. Sources told us they were concrete not steel, called N U Girders.

Workers on scene told us they were arriving to the site from the Kansas City area. Each one is 110-feet long. The tractor and towing units make the entire rig about 170-feet.

Tractor trailer drivers traveled north on S Rangeline and some turned around at 29th Street to back the girders into the construction site, parked behind the construction signage.

| MORE RANGELINE BRIDGE >> All businesses continue to have Rangeline access through construction

Other major changes include new walls. The former bridge had earthen berms supporting the elevated roadway. Now there are concrete walls. No more mowing.

There are large cranes now on site that will place the girders into place.

We counted nearly 10 girders. Workers said two more will arrive Thursday morning.

The bridge is expected to be completed in December.

• The new bridge is 2 feet higher
• The new bridge is 15 feet wider
• The new bridge is 27 feet shorter
• The new bridge will have sidewalks on both sides

Overview of bridge. Note the raised roadway is mostly earthen berms to a retaining wall allowing 27th and 29th and all normal business access to continue on South Rangeline.


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Rangeline bridge overpass of KCS railroad

JOPLIN, Mo. — It has been a little over a week since  south Rangeline was closed at the bridge overpass of the KCS railway and things are looking very different.

“Work on Range Line Road bridge is well underway. Originally rebuilt in 1976, with a target completion in December 2022, this new bridge will be higher, wider, and better accommodate the nearly 25,000 vehicles daily that rely on this major connector.” — City of Joplin

Click 👉🏼 The Joplin Police this week offered some navigational tips on planning ahead when entering the construction area(s).

All businesses remain open on the north and south sides of the construction.

Click 👉🏼 Maria’s Mexican Restaurant is moving into the shadow of the Rangeline overpass construction. The road (29th) will remain open to Import Warehouse, Maria’s and Oasis Salon and Day Spa.

Stay with Joplin News First on KOAM News Now as we continue to follow the progress of the bridge build. Scroll below to sign up for our JLNews email alerts so you don’t miss an article.

Maria’s Mexican Restaurant, 17 years in Joplin, moving to larger location

JOPLIN, Mo. — Tuesday South Rangeline closed as part of the KCS bridge overpass. It is scheduled to be closed up to 90 days.

Sources at Maria’s Mexican Restaurant also tell us they are moving to a new location, in the shadow of the new Rangeline overpass at 2850 S Rangeline.

“We will be moving to the former Pacific Rim building. The Old [Missouri Pacific] Train Depot,” Maria’s tells us.

The building was constructed in the 1990’s as Timberline Steakhouse. A potion of the building is from the Missouri Pacific Depot formerly located near 10th and Virginia Ave. It was disassembled, stones marked, and then rebuilt using the 4,500 exterior stones at the new location.

MoDOT officials assure us all businesses still have Rangeline access. Even access for the new Maria’s on 29th Street which also takes one to Import Warehouse, Oasis Salon and Day Spa, and then to Arizona Ave businesses

After 17 years on East 32nd, they say they will begin moving late this month and hope to open the first week of October.

• Whataburger Joplin agenda details future possibilities
• KFC returns to Joplin
• Panera Bread walls go up at new Joplin location

Stay with Joplin News First on KOAM News Now as we continue to follow Mari’s move to their new home. Scroll below and sign up for our JLNews email alerts so you don’t miss an article.

171 at Carl Junction reopens after it was impacted by flooding

UPDATE: 171 reopened AT 5:32 p.m., May 6.

JASPER COUNTY, Mo. — About 7:30 a.m. Friday morning traffic was being diverted along 171 Asbury to Carl Junction as Spring River has gone over the roadway.

  • CLOSED 171 southbound, divert from state line at State Route H east to 43 south
  • CLOSED 171 northbound, divert 43 north to State Route H west
  • CLOSED CR280
  • CLOSED CR280 North of Locust Rd

💻 You can view the MoDOT TRAVELERS map on your computer by clicking here.


AMAZING WATER RESCUE >> Car swept off roadway by rushing waters, Golden City Fire and Jasper Fire rescue driver 


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Golden City Fire and Jasper Fire water rescue driver Thursday morning.

Flooding at Spring River Kellogg Lake Park, Carthage, Mo.



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Severe Weather Preparedness Week, March 7 – 11; Monday reminder to bookmark pages and save apps

JOPLIN, Mo. – Every year in the spring it’s time to remind everyone about being weather ready as severe weather approaches.  This year March 7 – 11, each day this week we will touch on something to help you get prepared.

Monday it’s about PREPAREDNESS.  We want to remind you to set bookmarks and download apps.

  • Set a bookmark for our KOAM MAPS AND APPS that will update you on road conditions and where to look.  You will also find ELECTRIC OUTAGE LINKS there too.
  • Each banner below links to the respective state where you can download the app, or use the portal to access active maps on your phone or digital device.

Tuesday is Tornado Preparedness. Statewide there will be a tornado drill at 10:00 a.m. weather permitting.

The links below will help you find out what you can do now to prepare for a tornado. Preparation is key to staying safe and minimizing impacts.

  • Be Weather-Ready: Check the forecast regularly to see if you’re at risk for tornadoes. Listen to local news or a NOAA Weather Radio to stay informed about tornado watches and warnings. Check the Weather-Ready Nation for tips.
  • Sign Up for Notifications: Know how your community sends warnings. Some communities have outdoor sirens. Others depend on media and smart phones to alert residents of severe storms capable of producing tornadoes.
  • Create a Communications Plan: Have a family plan that includes an emergency meeting place and related information. If you live in a mobile home or home without a basement, identify a nearby safe building you can get too quickly, such as a church or family member.
  • Pick a safe room in your home, such as a basement, storm cellar, or an interior room on the lowest floor with no windows. Check more ideas for your family plan at:
  • Practice Your Plan: Conduct a family severe thunderstorm drill regularly so everyone knows what to do if a tornado is approaching. Make sure all members of your family know to go there when tornado warnings are issued. Don’t forget pets if time allows.
  • Prepare Your Home: Consider having your safe room reinforced. You can find plans for reinforcing an interior room to provide better protection on the Federal Emergency Management Agency website.
  • Help Your Neighbor: Encourage your loved ones to prepare for the possibility of tornadoes. Take CPR training so you can help if someone is hurt.


Road conditions: cannot travel posted speed limit on these roads

JOPLIN METRO AREA – Precipitation falling currently at 10:15 a.m. It will glaze the roads again.  We believe the worst is over according to sources.

**Cannot travel the posted speed limit on these roads**

  • MAP:
  • PURPLE covered
  • BLUE partially covered
  • I-44 W 14.3 MM slide off single vehicle crash w/injuries.
  • Baseline Blvd & CR220 semi slide-off. M&M Wrecker on scene.
  • I-49 N 92.2 MM car off roadway upside down. Wrapped with tape.
  • DO NOT CALL — NOTE: All vehicles marked with yellow tape have been checked and will be removed when weather permits.

Police cruiser slammed after car loses control on icy roads

BONNER SPRINGS, Kan. — With nearly 10 inches of snow falling in the Kansas City Metro area this week, the roadways became hazardous quickly.  Friday the Joplin Metro is more clear but Kansas City is still blanketed.

A Bonner Springs Police officer escaped serious injuries as a car loses control and slams into a stopped vehicle and his patrol car.

Our officer was stopped assisting another motorist who had struck our patrol car when another motorist lost control and slammed into both vehicles causing major damage and minor injuries.” – BSPD

BSPD urge everyone during bad weather to slow down, leave early and allow extra space.

Kansas City Traffic Scout/MoDOT KDoT report nearly 365 traffic incidents on Thursday alone in the KC Metro area.

Stay with Joplin News First and KOAM News Now for breaking news and important stories where you live.