Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

April 9, 2014

UPDATE: Work now underway to clear McDowell County rockslide

Bluefield Daily Telegraph

IAEGER — Contractors were working Wednesday to remove a rockslide that has been impeding travel for residents in the Iaeger and Panther communities.

School bus detours lasting more than two hours and alternate routes through the mountains have been concerning residents ever since a rockslide blocked County Route 1 between Iaeger and Panther on April 6.

 After receiving numerous complaints, an emergency purchasing request was approved to allow a contractor to handle the removal of a large rock and clean-up of the rockslide, according Carrie Bly, communications specialist for the state Department of Transportation. The work is estimated to cost approximately $25,000.

“The contractor is making progress on the rockslide clean-up along county Route 1,” Bly said in a statement issued today. “We are still on track to have the roadway open to all traffic by Friday. Emergency vehicles are still being granted access through the work zone.”

Panther Creek Road has been serving as a detour route. A hole approximately 16 inches in diameter formed this morning in the road due to a culvert collapse. DOH crews placed a steel plate over the roadway to serve as a temporary fix, Bly said.