Road Dept. On Call In Case Heavy Rains Cause Damage

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Benton County supervisors are keeping an eye on the radar.

Terry Nalley, the new administrator of public services at the Benton County Road Department, said two superintendents are on call.

"That way we have crews available, ready to go to any emergency that might happen," Nalley said.

The department is also maintaining contact with the Benton County Emergency Management Office during the storms.

"If they see something that needs to be addressed tonight or tomorrow, we've already got that piece of it in place," Nalley said.

Road crews have been working to get roads back in shape after rainfall brought floods in the April and August floods. Nalley said at this time, most crews are working on Avoca Hallow and Short Road, roads that are still damaged from the last set of major rainfall but will soon be completed.

Kent Coffee lives on Short Road. He said he's glad to see the completion of the road.

"It devastated it. Two cars couldn't meet at the bottom of the hill after the rains and the county has been working on it for about three weeks," Coffee said. "It's 90 percent better than its ever been before, so hopefully it will hold together if we get some heavy rains."

Short Road is expected to be complete by next Friday and Avoca Hallow by Wednesday. Crews are also working in different areas on culverts, bridges and ditches.

Nalley said there are about 100 sites that still need work and that doesn't include the work under FEMA.

"FEMA is still out evaluating things, our emergency management system is out evaluating those and before we can start working on these we've got to get their reports back," Nalley said.

However, the process to finish patching the damaged roads is expected to be a long one.

"We've got a lot of work for our crews to get completed," Nalley said.

Benton County is one of six counties declared a disaster by Governor Mike Beebe back in August. There isn't a time frame available to when all the road repair work from the previous floods will be completed.