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Commissioners Remind Motorists That Sandpit Road Will Be Closed Monday
Updated July 12, 2017 7:08 AM
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(BEDFORD) - Lawrence County Highway Superintendent David Holmes told the commission Tuesday morning that beginning on Monday, Sandpit Road from Mitchell Road to the railroad tracks will be closed to rehabilitate Bridge 133.

Crews from CLR will be replacing the deck on the bridge that spans Leatherwood Creek. The company submitted the lowest bid of $262,000.

The project is anticipated to take about 60 days, but could take as long as 90 days to complete.

Officials say every effort will be made to get the bridge deck replaced as soon as possible as not to burden residents that live in the area and those that use the transfer station.

South I Street will see much more traffic due to the road being closed and motorists and residents are asked to use extra caution.

Crews continue to pave, patch and chip and seal county roads.

"We hope to have the rest of the roads paved before school starts," says Holmes. " Crews are chipping and sealing in District 2."

The work will stop this week in anticipation of ABATE's 2017 Boogie at the Lawrence County Recreation Park.

Crews will resume chip and sealing in District 2 after the Boogie concludes.

Crews are also cutting brush and mowing.


Emergency Management Director Valerie Luchauer says the county is having an issue with having enough ambulances for emergency calls.

"Many are abusing the 911 system," says Luchauer. "We are trying to educate the public, but many of the ambulances are being tied up on lift assists or helping the disabled getting to and from appointments or being assisted up and downstairs. That ties up the ambulances and first responders and they are then not available to respond to true emergency calls like a serious vehicle accident or someone suffering a heart attack."

She says the problem is not just in Lawrence County.

"We are often used for mutual aid in Jackson, Orange and Monroe counties when their ambulances are tied up," she added. "And we often times put Monroe and ORange County on stand by here."

The problem doesn't have an easy solution.

"Even if we had 10 ambulances we would still have times when an ambulance would not be available," she added.

Luchauer continues to work on seeking quotes for replacement guide wires for the communication tower on Kings Ridge Road.

The tower, built in 1961, is 320-feet tall and has 36 guide wires securing it to the ground and the aging guide wires need replaced.

The county has owned the tower for more than 40 years with little to no repairs being made on the tower.

Commissioner Rodney Fish is also seeking quotes for the removal of some trees surrounding the tower.

She had purchased backup batteries for the emergency message boards for the courthouse and courthouse plaza.

The cost of the batteries were around $500 for 10 batteries.

In other issues, the county is looking at purchasing security cameras for inside the courthouse.

During a simulated hostage situation at the Lawrence County Courthouse on the afternoon on May 17th officials learned they didn't have a good assessment of the area looking up the stairway inside the courthouse.


Lawrence County Sheriff Mike Branham reported there were 142 inmates in the jail. Of those 29 were female, 19 Level 6 felons and 2 Department of Correction holds.

"That is the best numbers I have seen in a while," Sheriff Branham added.

Sheriff Branham had to leave the meeting early due to jail inspectors being at the facility on Tuesday.

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