Wednesday, May 22, 2024
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Dekalb, Smith Route 141 Set For Extended Closure

State Route 141 in DeKalb and Smith Counties will be closed for an extended period after heavy rains last week caused a road slide.

T-DOT Community Relations Officer Rae Anne Bradley said some 100 feet of road was damaged last Thursday and the road was completely closed on Friday. She said an inner retaining wall will have to be constructed and installed to reopen one lane of traffic. She expects a temporary traffic signal and intermittent flagging operations to begin directing one lane of traffic flow two weeks after repairs begin.

“Slow down,” Bradley said. “Allow yourself plenty of extra time. Drive very carefully through this area and pay attention for the posted signage. Watch for our workers. You know, they’re going to be having to work very close to the lane where drivers are going to be passing.”

Bradley said T-DOT has not received contractor availability yet, but work is expected to begin no later than next week. She said from there, drivers can expect two weeks of complete closure and another seven weeks of repairs.

“These types of failures typically occur where two distinct planes of materials exist,” Bradley said. “And those are usually some type of soil on top of some type of angled layer of rock. So, excessive rainfall or groundwater can saturate that soil to the point that it acts very similar to, like, a thick liquid, and slide along that angled rock plane.”

She said repairs will be a combination of steel nails and retaining walls. She said the nails will be embedded horizontally into the rock in a pattern that consolidates the materials and helps it to act as a cohesive unit.

“Shotcrete will be sprayed on top of the nails to act as an initial retaining wall, and then an outer block retaining wall will be constructed and placed to support the vertical soil nails,” Bradley said. “So the rock fill is going to be placed between those two walls and layered with geotech-style fabric to consolidate the fill.”

Bradley said additional signage will be added to alert drivers to changes in traffic patterns while work is underway in the 500-foot repair area.

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