Earth slide project complete

Published 12:00 am Monday, January 6, 2003

PERRY TOWNSHIP-- All done. The project to reroute part of Little Ice Creek around a giant chunk of rock and earth that fell last month from a hillside overlooking Crabtree Hollow Road was finished Monday, according to project Engineer Charlie Frazier.

Frazier said workers with Tim Hall Contracting of Wheelersburg installed rip rap Monday on one section of creek bank and seeded an area along the creek to prevent soil from washing away.

The project was a joint effort by the Lawrence Soil and Water Conservation District, the Lawrence County Commission and the United States Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Services. The federal agency provided 75 percent of the funding for the project, with the soil and water office picking up the rest of the $19,800 tab.

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"It was a good project," Frazier said. "The contractor did a good job considering the weather conditions we had. This was probably one of the smoothest projects we've had."

And no doubt one of the most unusual. Frazier said it is common for the soil and water district to be involved in projects to stabilize stream banks and to repair earth slippages, but not one of this magnitude.

"The rock just slipped off a high wall," Frazier said. "It fell by the force of its own weight. Normally, its more soil and than rock that we deal with."

One piece of the rock that fell into Little Ice Creek measured 130 feet in length. The massive rock completely dammed up that portion of Little Ice Creek, forcing water into the back yards of residents. The high water in the creek was even blamed for one death. Trisha Walters, 24, of Coal Grove, died when her car went off the pavement on a stretch of Little Ice Creek-Possum Hollow Road. She was trapped underwater inside her car. Residents say that part of the creek rarely has enough water to trap or drown anyone.