The Richmond Register

January 22, 2013

Tates Creek mudslide issue is not ‘settled’

By Ronica Shannon
Senior News Writer

RICHMOND — The soil on the hill above 2057 Tates Creek Road must settle before knowing whether or not the reoccurring mudslides will stop, according to officials of the Kentucky Soil Conservation Commission.

Madison County Emergency Management Director Carl Richards met Tuesday with representatives from the agency who came to inspect an area where four mudslides have occurred in the past two years.

Richards reported to the Madison Fiscal Court Tuesday morning that “Until we do something proactive with some engineering, this is going to continue to happen.”

The latest incident came Sunday, Jan. 13, after two days of steady rain, shutting down one lane along the 2057 address.

“My biggest fear is that there’s going to be a school bus there when it falls and that won’t look good because we’ve had four chances to get it right and we haven’t done it,” Richards said. “Not meaning us (the county) per se, because it’s a state road.”

There is no way to know how long it will take the soil to settle, he said. “In theory, we could have a long history of this. Until nature takes its course, it’s going to continue to do this.”

The Kentucky Department of Transportation could put in a retention device at the location to keep the mudslide from happening again, Richards said.

Aside from the trouble area being in the state’s jurisdiction, there is another factor that adds more complication to the issue.

“The dirt that’s actually sliding is on private property,” Richards said. This is an issue that will have to be discussed with someone who is a legal representative, he said.