Friday, March 30, 2012

Slide closes 101 south of Port Orford

A landslide blocking U.S. Highway 101 since Thursday night continues to move this morning, keeping highway crews from attacking the blockage, according to a 7:45 a.m. update from the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT).
The slide is located about 11 miles south of Port Orford, at milepost  310, south of Humbug Mountain.
"An estimated 400 yards of rocky debris make up the slide," according to the latest ODOT update. "It is still active due to the saturated soils. Crews are assessing this morning. Because of safety concerns, they won't begin clean up until it becomes more stable."
Southbound traffic is being stopped at Port Orford and northbound traffic at Nesika Beach north of Gold Beach. The Curry Coastal Pilot sent News Alert emails about the slide to 2,400 readers late Thursday night; the Curry County Sheriff's Office made recorded messages calls to everyone signed up for its emergency warning list.
ODOT advised drivers to use alternate routes, in this case via Interstate 5 through Roseburg and Grants Pass - a detour of more than 250 miles.
In addition, some lanes of Highway 101 are closed between Brookings and Gold Beach because of slumping roadbeds. Traffic is still moving through those areas, however.
Watch for updates about the Highway 101 Friday on this website, and in the Saturday, March 31, edition of the Curry Coastal Pilot.
The National Weather Service has been warning all week that heavy rains and high winds could cause land movements along the Curry County coastline. Thursday's rain was the heaviest so far this week, dropping more than 2.3 inches at the Pilot's weather station in downtown Brookings.
You can find links to the latest forecasts, weather conditions at road reports at www. .