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Six highways in county still closed due to Hurricane Florence damage

  • 8 March 2019
  • Author: Dan McNiel
  • Number of views: 2255
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Six highways in county still closed due to Hurricane Florence damage

In the aftermath of Hurricane Florence in September, 45 road and bridge locations were damaged.
According to David L. Johnson, District Five construction engineer for South Carolina Department of Transportation, six locations are still closed in the county due to damage.
The locations are Highway 1 in Wallace, Level Green Church Road, David’s Mill Pond, Highway 381, Academy Road,  and Old Wire Road.
Johnson said the prime contractor, Cherokee Incorporated, is scheduled to open Highway 1 by the end of April. 
"Demolition of the existing culvert is complete," he said. "Design, utility relocations, weather, and elevated water levels have hindered progress thus far."
Level Green Church Road and David’s Mill Pond are included in an Emergency Design Build Bridge package. 
Johnson said the bridge demolition on both bridges was completed last week.  "Bridge construction on Level Green Church Road is expected to begin this week.  The contract completion dates for both sites are in August 2019," he said.
DHEC is leading the way with the property owners of the dam failures for Highway 381, Academy Road and Old Wire Road
Johnson said the property owner will have to coordinate with South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control to permanently breach or rebuild the dam before DOT can do anything with the roadway/bridge. 
"If the property owner decides to breach the dam and meets all of the SCDHEC requirements, then SCDOT will have to complete a design on a new structure (examples include bridge, culvert or pipe) to carry the new stream," Johnson said.
County Councilman Verd Odom and Jimmy Bellinger, who owns McLaurin Mill Pond under Highway 381 South are concerned with the progress.
"The bridge is good and the dam is good," Odom said. "The road is washed out."
Odom said people have to go around McColl to get to Clio or Oak River Mill.
"It is a major disruption to all the people here," Bellinger said.
He is especially concerned when EMS and the fire department if they have a fire on the other side of here between McColl and Clio where the bridge is and have to go around. 
"A fire, heart attack or stroke-- a matter of minutes is a big difference."
Both Bellinger and Odom said it was an extra 10-15 minutes added to response times.

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