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Federal funds sought for emergency road repairs

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Date:  Thursday, March 29, 2012

Contact: Alice Fiman, WSDOT Communications, 360-705-7080 (Olympia)

OLYMPIA – The Washington State Department of Transportation is applying for emergency federal funds to repair highways in Mason and Clark counties damaged by landslides.

WSDOT crews are already working to repair damaged sections of State Route 3 in Mason County, and they will soon begin repairs on SR 501 in Clark County.

The state’s application for emergency federal funds follows Gov. Chris Gregoire’s March 23 proclamation of a state of emergency due to rain and windstorms in February and March.

“These emergencies underscore the importance of our maintenance programs,” said state Transportation Secretary Paula Hammond. “Our infrastructure is aging, and weather takes a toll every year. If we don’t act quickly to address and keep up with these issues, we lose the use of important highways for moving freight and people, which effects local economies and people’s lives.”

SR 3 near Shelton is reduced to one lane as crews work to stabilize an eroding hillside above Oakland Bay. After a 75-foot section of the northbound shoulder sloughed about 6 feet March 16, WSDOT engineers determined the retaining wall needs to be replaced and extended. The cost and length of time to make the fix are not yet determined.

On SR 501, heavy rains and snowmelt caused a small landslide just east of Ridgefield in February. The slide opened a small hole in the eastbound shoulder and damaged a short section of guardrail and asphalt curb. WSDOT continues to monitor the slide area and plans repairs in April.

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WSDOT keeps people, businesses and the economy moving by operating and improving the state's transportation systems. To learn more about what we're doing, go to http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/news/ for pictures, videos, news and blogs. Real time traffic information is available at http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/traffic/ or by dialing 511.


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