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Friday, Apr. 29, 2016

FEMA visits area

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Photo by Jan Thompson Oregon County Presiding Commissioner Leo Warren, Southern District Commissioner John Wrenfrow and FEMA official Mike Meranda and Joseph Herberlie from Missouri Engineering of Rolla look over the washed out bridge at Mill Creek May 14.
OREGON COUNTY -- Residents in the southern portion of Oregon County have not been able to cross the bridge at Mill Creek since it was washed out in the spring floods.

The bridge is located off H Highway on County Road 277.

Presiding Commissioner Leo Warren and Southern District Commissioner John Wrenfrow met with Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) official Mike Meranda and Joseph Heberlie, an engineer from Missouri Engineering Company in Rolla, May 14 at the bridge site.

Wrenfrow said the bridge began to wash out after the first flood in March. "We put gravel on both ends of the bridge. FEMA was here then and told us to close the bridge," he said.

Wrenfrow said the second flood of April 10 completely washed the gravel away. The high water washed out the tin horns under the bridge and the concrete slabs are falling through. Six to eight inches of fast moving water is still running over what use to be the bridge at Mill Creek.

Warren said the bridge is 40 to 50 years old and told Meranda the county is requesting total replacement of the bridge. The bridge is 190 feet long and 17 feet wide.

Wrenfrow said the bridge is used heavily by farmers, loggers, mail carriers and local residents who attend Walnut Grove Church. "All of these people are having to go six miles out of their way and with the way gas prices are, this is not good," Wrenfrow said.

Wrenfrow said the meeting at the bridge site sounded pretty good.

"The engineer is suppose to draw up estimate costs and also send the hydraulics of the water upstream from the bridge. He still also has to get permits from the Corp of Engineers," Wrenfrow said.

He said Heberlie was suppose to have his plans to the FEMA representative by last Tuesday.

"From there the plans will go to a board of review and if the engineer and FEMA agree, they should start working on a new bridge right away," he said.


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