Published: Sep 28, 2011 2:56 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) - Structural engineers are expected to begin rappelling down the Washington Monument to check on damage caused by last month's earthquake.
    
Carol Johnson, a spokeswoman for the National Park Service, said Wednesday morning that a team was inside the monument and preparing to begin the work.
    
It rained heavily in Washington on Wednesday. Rappelling had not yet begun by 9:30 a.m. It was not immediately clear when it would begin.
    
The inspection of the monument's exterior was delayed a day because of lightning. A team worked for several hours Tuesday setting up equipment and creating a protective barrier around the monument's lightning rods. The engineers will be looking for cracks, chips and other damage caused by the 5.8-magnitude quake that shook the nation's capital Aug. 23.

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