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SHA Targeting One Lane Traffic On MD 135 At 6 AM Tuesday

April 20th, 2015 by WCBC Radio

(April 20, 2015) – The Maryland Department of Transportation’s State Highway Administration (SHA) is still on the scene of a massive rock slide in Westernport, Allegany County. The slide occurred on Friday, April 17, causing the closure of MD 135 (Front Street/Pratt Street) between Westernport and Luke. On Tuesday, April 21, SHA will open one lane and alternate traffic starting at 6 a.m.

“It’s fairly typical to have springtime rock slides on this steep mountain, but this slide has deposited a significant amount of debris and large boulders,” said SHA District Engineer Anthony Crawford. “Crews are going to work through the evening to clear debris from MD 135 so we can at least get one lane open by Tuesday morning.”

SHA geologists, maintenance crews and traffic engineers are developing a strategy to secure the face of the mountain at this location as loose debris continues to fall.  Maintenance forces are also clearing as much as heavy equipment can handle.  Some of the boulders are very large and will be difficult to remove. Additionally, heavy rain may cause more debris to fall onto MD 135, particularly with rain in the forecast.

Until one lane becomes available, motorists and truckers will be directed to continue on MD 36 to I-68 and travel west to the MD 495 (Bittinger Road) exit to travel back to MD 135. This detour is approximately 40 miles so added commute time will be necessary.

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