Franklin Countys First News

Route 16 down to one lane after wash out

DALLAS PLANTATION - Portions of the state road connecting Rangeley to Eustis are under repair this week, following an intense thunderstorm Friday evening.

According to Maine Department of Transportation's Norman Haggan, manager of MDOT Region 3, several hours of hard rain Friday night and into Saturday caused the washout. A large culvert in Dallas Plantation became plugged, which led to a number of smaller, downhill culverts following suit. One large section, several hundred feet in length, lost an entire lane while other, smaller sections lost chunks of the shoulder or travel lane. Haggan estimated the damage at roughly $100,000.

Saturday, 12 hours after the rain stopped, MDOT crews were able to stabilize Route 16 with gravel, reopening one lane for travel. Portable traffic signals, illuminated at night, have been deployed along the damaged portions.

MDOT has hauled in 2,000 yards of gravel, using a state crew with some rented equipment. Haggan said work was "progressing well" and that he believed both lanes would be open sometime next week. Repaving the damaged road will take longer; the project would need to go out to bid to a private contractor.

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