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Watch Live: Gov. Beshear to hold next Eastern KY flooding update Thursday 8/11 at 12:30 p.m.

Repairs to some flood damaged roads in Eastern Kentucky could take one year

Stu Johnson

Major flooding did major damage to a number of roadways in eastern Kentucky. H.B. Elkins is the public information officer for the district ten State Transportation Office in Jackson. He said damages in just Breathitt and Perry Counties could go well above $10 million. And Elkins noted it will take some time to make repairs.

“It may be a year before some of the breaks are repaired. Obviously, we’re going to prioritize and try to get everything passable or at least make sure that there’s an alternate way in or out,” said Elkins.

And Elkins said that is the case, by and large now, with alternate routes. He added full-scale damage assessments will come later.

Elkins noted five roads in Perry County were closed. That included a closure affecting the Hardburly community. Elkins said vehicle traffic was cut off.

“The contractor that was working on that new drainage structure there put in a temporary pedestrian access so at least people can walk in and out. You can bring supplies right up to the point where the road was washed out and then people can walk across there to deliver them to the people that are on the other side,” said Elkins

Elkins said the hope was to get one lane open along Kentucky 1146 in Perry County. He noted repair crews from about every other state highway district have come to lend a hand.

And the veteran state transportation official strongly recommends viewing visitors stay away for now. Elkins said those individuals can get in the way of relief efforts.

Stu has been reporting for WEKU for more than 30 years.
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