TORNADO, WV (WOWK) – Residents are speaking out about a road in Tornado that they say has been in poor condition for over a decade.
According to residents, Coal River Road – which runs from St. Albans to Alum Creek – has been getting worse and worse over the years.
“The road has always had issues and through the years it’s just gotten worse,” said Donna Pauley, Tornado resident. “The buses don’t even run this road. Fire trucks weigh just as much, if not more as a school bus. So, how are they going to get to us?”
According to Kanawha County Schools, school buses were unable to make it through the road this past week because of a large hole. They said buses had to drop students off at the S&D Grocery store until the problem was fixed.
The West Virginia Division of Highways was onsite fixing the problem Monday and the buses were able to resume their normal route again. Still, residents said there still are other areas that need to be addressed before they feel safe driving on the road.
“The danger alone to family and kids. The people that live here have to do it every day, but if I lived here every day I wouldn’t have been as patient as I’ve been,” said Bill Currey, Chairman of Coal River Group. “Think about putting your kid on a school bus and having to traverse this. It needs to be fixed.”
Currey has worked along Coal River Road for 20 years. He said crews have come to repair patches from time to time, but he’s hoping there will be a more permanent solution soon.
“They’ve done temporary patches,” he said. “They’ve kept it passable, but they haven’t fixed it. Fixing it to me is repairing it to where it stays.”
The West Virginia Division of Highways said they will be completing a piling wall to fix the road, and equipment will be moving in shortly. However, they said the exact schedule will be determined partially by the weather.
The road will be closed starting Wednesday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.