FERRY COUNTY, Wash. --- The Ferry County Commissioners shared a drone video on Youtube of a washout on Deadman Creek Road that has been causing problems for more than a week.
Matsen Creek is the only detour and people can only access it if they have four-wheel drive. Officials said high amounts of moisture in the soil have thwarted previous efforts to bring material in to make repairs because the road surface will not support the weight of heavy equipment.
“To put more equipment on the road would actually force it to collapse,” explained Amy Rooker, the emergency manager for the county. “They will eventually get up there but not until it’s safe to have equipment and people up there moving around.”
The Ferry County Sheriff said they have an agreement to get rock and gravel from a U.S. Forest Service pit that will help crews make repairs in the next few days.
“Their main concern is filling the main huge potholes and going around those,” Rooker said.
Two homes in the area have been recommended to evacuate – one house at the base of the slide and another “right as you’re coming up Deadman.”
“If you feel you have medical needs to either stock up or evacuate the area until road conditions get better,” Rooker said.
Last week, Ferry County officials said they were dealing with at least 40 roads that have been damaged or made completely impassable because of the excessive moisture. They asked people in the county to prepare for things to continue to get worse as highland snow melts and adds to the already saturated lower drainages.
Officials also warned about a rocky area along Inchelium Highway just south of Barnaby Creek road that slid a few years ago. They said it is showing signs of sliding again and could represent a significant risk to the safety of drivers. They think the road could be closed at any time and they are working to assess the potential slide.
If a situation in the county exists that you are not sure is a hazard or not, call the Ferry County Sheriff’s Office at 509-775-3132 and ask for help.