UPDATE 16/01/23 - Yellow Creek Road was open for traffic Friday after a contractor fixed a major slip that had the road closed since April, 2015.|
UPDATE 16/01/05 - The WV Department of Highways has accepted a low bid from Steve Marks Construction, dpa Marks Drilling in the amount of $164,304.05 for the repair of a Yellow Creek road slip that has closed the highway since last April.
The company is moving equipment to the site to commence work on the project.
Five other companies bid on the project.
UPDATE 10/27/15 - District 5 Department of Highways officials say help is on the way to repair a major slip on Yellow Creek Road that has caused the highway to be closed since last April.
Jake Bumgarner, assistant district engineer, told the Herald that design plans have been sent to the state's Contract Administration.
"The bids could be advertised in November. It's in the pipeline." Bumgarner said.
Bumgarner said the district had a large number of road slips this year, somewhere between 100-150, but indicated the Yellow Creek slip and a Jackson County slip were likely the only total closures. Some slips are FEMA projects.
Regarding why a quicker fix to open the highway with rock fill was not done, Bumgarner said, "We didn't think such a fill would bear the traffic."
He also acknowledged that having funds to make fixes is a problem.
The road closure has caused problems for work commuters, extending their time up to 45 minutes each way, and there are further problems for emergency responders.
YELLOW CREEK ROAD STILL CLOSED BY MAJOR SLIP SINCE APRIL - Commuters, School Buses, Emergency Responders Facing Challenges
UPDATE 10/14/2015 - Still no action has been taken on the closed Yellow Creek Road, with nearly seven months approaching.
Resident Melissa Badgett Cunningham, who has been working on the problem, has submitted a petition to the West Virginia Department of Highways, and has sought support of Sen. Shelly Moore Capito and Delegate Roger Hanshaw.
Badgett said Sen. Capito responded to her concern, but so far the highway department is mum.
Cunningham says the closure, caused by a slip, is a serious personal transportation and safety issue to the residents of the area, and she is taken-back that so far no efforts have been made to open up the highway.
A few weeks ago police were at Jackson Hill where a tractor-trailer had the
road blocked when they got an emergency 911 call, being
dispatched to Little Creek (access off Rt. 5
They started to take the short cut down Yellow
Creek, and could not, coming back all the way back to Mt. Zion to Hur and then Little Creek.
"This road closure is affecting many families on a daily basis," said Cunningham, often adding 45 minutes or more to a trip.
Yellow Creek Road closed to through traffic since June
By Bob Weaver
Commuters to work and school buses have been using alternative routes since a major road slip closed the Yellow Creek Road in April.
Workers who use the highway could likely be adding 25 or more miles on their one-way commute to work, and a school bus comes from Big Bend (Rt. 5) and turns around at the slip, which is a short distance from State Rt.16 at Big Springs.
Residents told the Hur Herald it has been more than an inconvenience, affecting emergency response times, mail, buses, UPS, FedEx, and trash removal all rerouted.
The Pleasant Hill PSD water line was also disrupted by the slip.
Local residents have been signing a petition to be submitted to the WV Department of Highways.
"When there is high water, it's more than just an aggravation. I fear for the safety of many in an emergency situation,"
said resident Melissa Badgett Cunningham, who has been working on the petition effort.
Road slips on secondary roads, particularly in recent years, have waited up to four years for repair, although some of them have been maintained for one-way traffic.
A number of slips disrupted traffic after heavy rain this spring, but most of them are passable with one-way traffic.
Slips are no longer repaired by local highway crews, but are bid to private contractors, part of the highway department's reduction to core maintenance.
The WV-DOT is facing significant funding problems with maintaining the highways, now saying they are on a 33-year repaving schedule.