The condition of one Putnam County road worries first responders

Several areas of Poca River Road that has potholes and road slips worry county first responders. (WCHS/WVAH)

The condition of Poca River Road in Putnam County has gone from bad to worse. With areas of potholes and slips along the roadway, county first responders are worried. Freezing temperatures and snow on the road are making the situation worse.

"The area up there has some concern for all those agencies in emergency services," Putnam County Emergency Management Director Frank Chapman said.

Some of those first responders have written letters to state leaders, saying the condition of Poca River Road is preventing them from responding quickly to an emergency when seconds matter.

"That road and the condition it is in in some places hampers the response of vehicles due to their ability to get up to speed then have to watch for potholes. They not only have to watch the road for other drivers they have to watch the road to make sure they don't run off the road in a bad spot as well," Chapman said.

"I'm afraid somebody is going to end up in a tragedy out here," said Don Fraley who is on a mission to make sure the potholes and slips along Poca River Road are repaired

"My biggest fear one is ending up in the river two when you go to pass another vehicle you've got nowhere to pass," Fraley said.

Travis Knighton, the District One engineer for the West Virginia Division of Highway, said three road slips are scheduled for repair in Putnam County. Two are on Poca River Road and one is near Heizer Creek in Poca. He said his office is looking for money to repair the other road slips and to address the concerns of first responders.

DOH crews have already done work in that rural part of Putnam County, including paving 2 1/2 miles of Harmon's Creek Road and installing pipes to stabilize the road.

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