Jackson County road still buckled, sunken in 1 year later

Jackson County road still buckled, sunken in 1 year later

JACKSON COUNTY, Ala. (WAFF) - A Jackson County road remains in pieces one year after it buckled during constant rainfall. County commissioners blame a slow process obtaining state and federal funds. Residents who live there say they feel left in the dark.

County Road 17 in Skyline has been closed since late February 2019. Major rainfall left much of Jackson County underwater including CR-17.

“It’s real disappointing that they’ve taken so long to do anything about it," said Lonnie Westmoreland.

“I do think that it is out of sight, out of mind," expressed Regina Precise.

Westmoreland, Precise and dozens of other homeowners in the area say they are ‘tired and frustrated’ by the entire process.

A makeshift path has been created to avoid the 14-mile detour, residents say.

Money to fix the roadway comes from federal, state and county funds.

Commission Chairman Tim Guffey says it has been a slow process getting a green-light from both the federal and state levels. Additionally, they faced challenges coming up with their 20%.

However, Guffey says dirt will move soon. They are using this opportunity to get to the root of the issue on a roadway with a deep history of problems.

“We’ll go in and do some excavation of the dirt and get it ready for the contractor They will come in and do their thing. Then we will come back in, pave it and get it ready to go," explained Guffey. “We’re going to be digging down about 40 feet and going to the root of the problem to fix it so we don’t have to worry about this happening again.”

The project will cost roughly $2.5 million.

There are three other slides across the county that also need attention. So far this year no slides have been reported.

Construction is expected to begin once the weather clears up, according to Guffey.

No word on an estimated completion date.

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