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Morgan County road still not repaired months after devastating floods

Bert Stinson Road in Falkville was shut down over fears it would collapse. It's still dangerous, and drivers can only use it when it's not raining.

Posted: Jul 25, 2019 6:04 PM
Updated: Jul 25, 2019 6:07 PM

A heavily traveled Morgan County road is still not repaired, five months after February's devastating floods. Bert Stinson Road in Falkville was shut down over fears it would collapse. It's still dangerous, and drivers can only use it when it's not raining.

The road was expected to be repaired by the start of this school year. WAAY 31 is told these same damaged pipes can lead to the road flooding over and over again.

Morgan County Commissioner Don Stisher says there isn't the money to make the repairs. 

"We know now it's back into my District Three budget, which, it's challenged with a lot of other projects," Stisher said. 

Stisher says the damage to Bert Stinson Road from February's floods did not qualify for federal flood reimbursements he hoped for. Right now, the road still has broken culvert pipes underneath, and when it rains, the road can flood easily. Repairing it would cost nearly $70,000, something Stisher can't fund right now.

"If we have a lot of rain overnight, four or five inches, they should be prepared to see the signage that we'll have that the road is underwater and/or damaged," Stisher said. 

The road is only open when it does not rain heavily and is determined to be safe to travel. 

Tim Shaneyfelt has lived on Bert Stinson Road for 54 years and depends on it.

"I go in and out five to six times a day. Without it, my business would suffer," Shaneyfelt said. 

He owns a company that sells shavings to poultry houses. When the road is closed, his customers and business lose out.

"It hurts on time because you've got a set amount of time to do a job. It hurts other people when you have to charge them more to get where you are going," Shaneyfelt said. 

Students will feel an impact this school year as well. Shaneyfelt has grandchildren in Falkville and Eva schools. The bus route normally comes through the road, but if it's too rainy, it won't come, leaving students stuck.

"So, it's left up to the parents to get the kids to school and some of them can't afford it," Shaneyfelt said. 

Commissioner Stisher says he will post on his social media pages when drivers can expect the road to close.

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