Crews Work To Clear Sand On Highway 90 Left By Matthew - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

10/10/04

Crews Work To Clear Sand On Highway 90 Left By Matthew

Besides flooding, Matthew also left behind another significant problem for South Mississippians.

Strong winds blew thick layers of sand along several sections of Highway 90.

Officials say at some places sand was up to a foot deep.

"Couldn't get the Highway Department, so the Sand Beach Department had to step in. We're always stepping in," said Foreman Terry Mitchell

Mitchell and other crewmen from the Sand Beach Department got the call shortly before noon on Sunday to man their equipment and begin removing sand from sections of Highway 90 left nearly buried by the winds of Matthew.

"We started at Cowan Road on the north side of the highway and we came down to Pass Christian and going from Pass Christian back to Courthouse. What are the worst spots? I'd say here maybe down around Gulf View, Long Beach, the VA Hospital in Gulfport was bad. Courthouse Road and Teagarden was bad and a little bit on the other side of Henderson Avenue was bad" Mitchell says.

There are many hazards associated with having this much sand on the roads.

It effects tire traction and a drivers ability to see the road.

But workers here say one of the greatest dangers is the drivers themselves.

"People won't slow down. You can watch the cars. They get on that sand it gets kind of slick. But if we get the sand off the highway and it'll be safer" Mitchell says.

Until that task is completed authorities all along the coast say they'll be keeping a close eye on the effected areas and the drivers passing through them.

"Everybody should just use caution till it clears itself, or until Sand Beach or the City or the Department of Transportation is able to get out there and get some of the sand moved," said Gulfport Lieutenant Alfred Sexton.

By: Don Culpepper

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