Delaware County Struggles To Fix Damaged Roads

Tuesday, May 2nd 2017, 6:27 pm
By: Emory Bryan

State and county road crews spent Tuesday scouting the damage from flood water and are working on repairs.

The damage to roads is widespread in eastern Oklahoma; in Delaware County, it's worse on the south end of the county where they got the most rainfall. On the eastern side, near the state line, a grader is working on a gravel road that, in places, was washed out over the weekend.

Trying to make temporary repairs to all the county roads damaged by the storm might seem like a never-ending job, but Commissioner Russell Martin has a possible timeline.

“If we can get the money to fix everything we can do, we’ll be working till fall,” he said.

But that's only if they get the money.

The damage estimate so far, for just this one commission district, is $987,000. The annual repair budget is $183,000.

Much of the damage is minor, just washouts that need a few truckloads of gravel.

Many roads had ditches that washed out and made the road too narrow - those will take longer and cost more to repair.

The most expensive loss was the damage to the Piney Creek bridge. Part of the structure washed away and the repair will cost over $400,000.

“We’re gonna have to have some help from FEMA, Cherokee Nation and anybody that can help, cause that’s way out of our budget. There’s no way that we can do that on our own,” Martin said.

Some places still need more time to drain but there's more rain in the forecast and the chance of more damage to county roads that already will take lots of time and money to fix.

Delaware County will keep making repairs with the materials and people they have now, but they'll have to wait for money from somewhere else to finish.