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Giant Rockslide closes I-40 in NC

Discussion in 'The OT' started by Cholly, Oct 27, 2009.

  1. Cholly

    Cholly Old Guys Rule! DBSTalk Club

    Mar 22, 2004
    On Sunday, Oct. 25, around 3 a.m., a hillside moved onto I-40 in North Carolina, about 3 miles from the Tennessee border, causing a 135 mile detour for truckers wanting to head west. It's expected that the highway will be closed until January or February while contractors clear up the debris and stabilize the hillside.

    slide show: http://www.charlotteobserver.com/galleries/gallery/1020027.html
  2. Lee L

    Lee L Hall Of Fame

    Aug 15, 2002
    Yeah, this sucks. THey have smaller slides in the area all the time because they built the road when the thinking was pretty much if a littel dynamite is good, then lots of it must be that much better and they did not fully understand the geology of the area. Lots of fractures that they made 10 times worse with blasting.

    My wife was at University of Tennessee for a graduate program in the mid to late 90s and there was a massive slide at one point that caused them to detour traffic around the tunnels for months. Caused some massive backups when we would go to see each other on teh weekends. Looks like this is just as bad or worse even.

    We have tickets to a couple of UT Basketball games around the end of January, hopefully it is somewhat cleared up by then as a 180 mile detour sounds like no fun.
  3. Doug Brott

    Doug Brott Lifetime Achiever DBSTalk Club

    Jul 12, 2006
    Los Angeles
    I was heading to UT from Asheville when this slide (one in the 90s) happened. I was the first car forced into a detour as a highway patrolman pulled in front of me and slowed us to a stop at the nearest exit.

    I'm glad I wasn't a few minutes earlier on that trip .. :eek:
  4. Clark143

    Clark143 Mentor

    Mar 18, 2007
    I - 81 and I-77 had some heavy traffic on it today because of this. Sheriff's in Virginia making some stimulus money on the extra traffic.

    To make things worse, as I was traveling north on 81 today a southbound Budget Rent-a-truck decided to flip and block the south bound lanes between Wytheville and Bristol.

    I was glad I was going the other direction.
  5. Matt9876

    Matt9876 Hall Of Fame

    Oct 11, 2007
    Tourist towns Pigeon Forge and Gatlinberg Tn. don't like this at all it will effect people coming in from the east for a long long time!
  6. Supramom2000

    Supramom2000 In Loving Memory of Onyx-2/23/09

    Jun 20, 2007
    Colbert, WA
    We have this in our Cascade Mountain Pass (I-90) as well. Same kind of tunnels, etc. Every spring they have some sort of landslide and they have avalanches there many times during the winter.
  7. Cholly

    Cholly Old Guys Rule! DBSTalk Club

    Mar 22, 2004
    Latest word from the NC DOT is that it will be late January or February before I-40 reopens.

    For those who aren't familiar with Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg, they are huge tourist magnets. Pigeon Forge is the home of Dolly Parton's Dollywood, and Gatlinburg is a major Smoky Mountain National Park destination, with many attractions for the entire family (Guiness and Ripley Museums, white water rafting, aerial tramway, etc.). And no, I've never been to either place although I have driven I-40 where the slide occured.

    They'll have to take US 19 and US 441 to get there. They'll get a chance to see a lot of the Smokies! Definitely a long trip. Another alternate route to get around the slide would be partly 2 lane US 70 west out of Asheville, taking it to I-40 at Newport, Tennessee. One could then take US 411 to US 441 in order to get to Pigeon Forge or Gatlinburg.
  8. SayWhat?

    SayWhat? Know Nothing

    Jun 6, 2009
  9. longrider

    longrider Well-Known Member DBSTalk Club

    Apr 21, 2007
    Elizabeth, CO
    They are only talking about the highway being closed for a few days, but check out the detour! I'm glad I don't have to go west right now

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