SWISSHOME, Ore. (KMTR) – Recent Earth-soaking rains have left some major damage along a small country road in Lane County
that links two coastal highways together.
Friday, December 30th, 2011, a large chunk of Stagecoach Road near Swisshome washed out and down a hill, forcing Lane County Public Works to close the road.
The washout happened between mileposts 8 and 9 along the 12 mile road. Around , local residents discovered half of the road missing along about an 80 foot section.
Stagecoach Road is a rural thoroughfare between Swisshome on Highway 36 to Richardson Road along Highway 126, about 10 miles east of Mapleton.
So far, Lane County Public Works’ Road Maintenance division has no estimate on a fix to the road, calling the closure “indefinite.” Some areas resident and emergency responders have learned that the road will likely go without an attempt at a fix until summer 2012.
For nearly a decade, Lane County Public Works has tackled several projects along the road including landslide clearing and work as the road interfaces with the Coos Bay Rail Link.
While Stagecoach Road is a rural road, it is used by many including Oregon State Police troopers who use it to travel between Highway 36 and 126. Several residents also live along the road.
A school bus driver, Randy Duvall also drives Stagecoach Road to pick up kids along the route.
The closure means extra travel time, having to get around to both sides of the road.
“You'd be surprised, there's a lot of vehicles that travel this road to look for wildlife I suppose instead of driving clear out through Mapleton, which is another 10 miles further. It's kind of a nice change of pace,” said Duvall.
“They'll go out the other way, they can get around,” said Duvall.
Lane County Public Works has put up a cement barricade at milepost 9 on the north side of Stagecoach Road. There’s also another roadblock on the south side to prevent drivers to going near the closure. Crews are still assessing a fix.
Some of the roadway that washed out of Stagecoach flowed on to the railroad down below. Most of that debris is clear but there is still mud on and near the tracks.