Long road to recovery ahead for NC 55

KINSTON, N.C. (WNCT) – “Just awestruck just to see what kind of damage the water had done here,” recounted Len White, Lenoir County’s maintenance engineer with North Carolina Department of Transportation.

It’s a scene out of a movie. A road washed out. A crater of destruction left behind.

“The southwestern part of the county really got hit hard,” he said.

Some problems were easy fixes. Others have temporary fixes in place.

A few, like the damage along Highway 55, won’t be easy to repair.

“Is this the worst that there is in the county and how many places are similar to this,” 9 On Your Side asked White.

“This is probably the worst,” said White. “We are on 55 West here. And there are four sites like this one. There’s a couple over on the western part of the county, northwestern part that’ll be long term. But this is probably the worst spot we have.”

And White said it could be well into next year before the damage along Whitley’s Creek is fully repaired.

“And we’re talking months it could take to fix,” asked 9 On Your Side.

“Yeah, it’s conceivable it could be up to four months to get the worst, biggest ones permanently fixed,” he answered.

Right now, White and his crew are getting all the estimates together to submit to the state and then FEMA. Then, a contractor will come in and complete the work.

In the meantime, White is asking just one thing of residents and commuters affected by the detours in place because of the damage.

“Just be patient,” he said. “Be patient with us. We’re getting it just as fast as we can.”

WNCT-TV 9 On Your Side provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s