Broken Arrow Residents: Company's 24-Hour Dredging 'Disturbing The Peace'

Tuesday, April 15th 2014, 6:09 pm
By: News On 6

Some people in Tulsa County don't like the 24 hour dredging happening along the Arkansas River. They said a sand and gravel company is operating at all hours of the day, and night, and it's too loud. Now, the residents are fighting back against the noise.

That company said it has made an effort to reduce noise, but still more than 100 people signed a petition and turned it in to the Tulsa County Board of Adjustment at the courthouse.

"We came out here, it was quiet. You could sit out at nights. You could see the stars. During the daytime it was very quiet. It was like living in the country, but having city conveniences," said Broken Arrow resident, Joe Smith.

It was once considered the country. Now, the peace is being disturbed by dredging.

"It's just metal hitting on metal, like a piece of equipment hitting on a piece of equipment. Bang, bang, bang, you know, like that," Smith said.

Smith has lived in his southern Broken Arrow home off 129th East Avenue for nearly 20 years. For the past few months, Smith and his neighbors have been awakened by what they call "unwanted noise" from Holliday Sand and Gravel Company.

Footage from Osage SkyNews 6 shows crews pulling sand from the Arkansas River bed. The company is asking the Tulsa County Board of Adjustment to expand hours of operation from nine hours per day to a nearly 24 hour operation.

The Vice President of the company said they need to increase hours to meet demand.

"I can put up with it during the day. When I'm walking around, it's noisy, but you get used to it," said Smith.

People who live in the area said they not only have to deal with the noise, but they also have to deal with the fast moving trucks that constantly fly down the road.

"You have a lot of people that walk this road and a lot of bikers that come up and down this road, especially on the weekends, and it's going to be dangerous for them," Smith said.

In the ten minutes we were at Smith's house we counted at least 17 trucks speeding down the road.

"There's another one right there. They just come right and left," said Smith.

Neighbors said they've seen a lot of close calls with the trucks and they fear the worst is yet to come if the sand and gravel company extends its hours.

After listening to multiple people, the board voted to hold off on making a decision. They plan to gather more information and take up the issue at their meeting in June.