Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Local News

July 8, 2014

Rock road closed due to bridge collapse

ROCK — Residents living near Rock will have to use an alternate route until state workers can repair a Bluestone River bridge that partially collapsed Monday morning.

A crew with the West Virginia Department of Highways was putting up “road closed” signs Monday afternoon. A resident who rode down on his ATV to see the damaged span said it fell down between 10 and 10:30 a.m. after a truck tried to cross it.

“I could go across with this, but not with another vehicle,” said Charles Gibson, 47, of the Rock area.

The bridge could be crossed on foot and possibly with an ATV, but regular cars or trucks would not be able to pass. Fortunately, residents on Kale Road have an alternate route out of their community.

“I’ll have to go out the back way around,” Gibson said, 47, who estimated that 16 to 17 homes were along Kale Road. “I don’t see why they don’t raise this bridge. This bridge floods all the time.”

Large sections of the bridge had collapsed; the span resembled structures damaged by earthquakes.

“It’s been broken for a while,” Gibson stated, adding water covers the bridge every time the county experiences heavy rain.

One section was “down two or three inches” before the bridge was broken Monday.

DOH workers putting signs up at the bridge said residents could still leave Kale Road by going to Black Oak Road and then to Rock.

Officials with District 10 of the state DOH could not be reached for comment Monday afternoon.

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