Not Again! Another Rockslide On I-40

Another rockslide is causing problems for workers on the closed section of Interstate 40 in North Carolina near Tennessee.

The latetst slide happened sometime late Friday or early Saturday morning.

Rocks and rock material slid onto a section of the westbound lanes. Officials describe the area affected as small.

And it is, compared the previous one. But it still brought down about 50 dump truck loads of material, with a rock the size of an SUV.

The rockslide covered an area 40 feet long and 50 feet wide on the highway, which has been closed since the October 25 rockslide.

This latest slide happened about four miles east of that slide.

The road was closed, so no civilian traffic was on it. Thankfully, none of the crews working to repair the road were impacted.

Crews now say there may be additional loose rock on the mountainside that needs to be removed.

NCDOT "still estimates that the interstate could be fully reopened sometime in March depending on weather conditions between now and then. The time needed to clean up the second rockslide should not change that timetable."

Travelers still can reach Western North Carolina via I-40 from the east and I-26 to the north and south. Exits 20 and 27 on I-40 provide access to popular destinations west of Asheville. In Tennessee, exits 432 through 451 provide access to popular destinations in southeastern Tennessee.

The detour route is 53 miles longer and is an additional 45 minutes to an hour driving time. Motorists traveling on I-40 West should take Exit 53B (I-240 West) in Asheville and follow I-240 West to Exit 4A (I-26 West). Follow I-26 West (a North Carolina Scenic Highway) to I-81 South in Tennessee. Take I-81 South and follow it back to I-40 at mile marker 421. Eastbound motorists should use the reverse directions.

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  • by Anonymous Location: Knoxville, TN on Jan 26, 2010 at 09:05 AM
    Don't go all the way to I-81 ... As long as you are not a large truck, use US hwy 25/70 from Weaverville NC to Newport TN it only adds 25 minutes vs going I-40.

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