The Times - Serving Waitsburg, Dayton and the Touchet Valley

By Dena Martin
The Times 

Rock Slide Blocks Tucannon Road


Mike Reed

Times subscriber Mike Reed captured this shot of several car-sized rocks and about a dozen smaller boulders that fell from a cliff to block Tucannon Road on Monday evening.

COLUMBIA COUNTY – It should have been quitting time, but a 5:10 p.m. call to dispatch reporting a rock slide on Monday evening, sent the Columbia County road crew back to work.

The slide occurred at milepost 10 on Tucannon Road, according to Columbia County Operations Supervisor Wayne Tate.

"There were three to four very large, car-size rocks directly in the road and another dozen half that size," Tate said.

No one was passing through at the time and the road crew was able to use a grader outfitted with a plow to shove the rocks off to the side of the road. Once the weather clears, they will return to pick them up and repair the divots left in the road, Tate said.

Tate attributed the fall to the freeze-thaw cycle. He said this is only the second time he recalls the road being blocked in the last 20 years but acknowledged that it is always a possibility.

"It's dependent on the weather. Moisture gets in cracks in the rocks, freezes, expands and knocks them loose. There's nothing that can be done about it. It's on private land and there are ledges and cliffs all along that area," he said.


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