Hwy 30 opens with 1-lane flaggers as landslide cleanup continues

U.S. 30 landslide progress.
U.S. 30 landslide progress.(Oregon Department of Transportation)
Published: Dec. 2, 2022 at 7:58 PM PST
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ASTORIA Ore. (KPTV) – Crews are continuing to make progress clearing a landslide about 20 miles east of Astoria. The Oregon Department of Transportation announced on Friday that one lane of the highway will soon be open all day with flaggers.

Due to Friday weather, one lane will be open all day with flaggers directing traffic and then close again during daylight hours on Saturday and Sunday. But ODOT said they hope to keep the lane open starting Monday.

Crews are working down the cliff side to remove large sections of loose rock left by the Nov. 29 landslide. This work must be done during daylight and coordinated with cleanup at the highway surface to keep crews safe, ODOT said.

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“It is too dangerous and complicated to run traffic during the day,” said ODOT Maintenance District 1 Manager Mark Buffington. “We are attempting to bring in another team of scalers tomorrow hoping to double our efforts.”

ODOT warned people to not follow GPS onto less developed roads to avoid the area, as the roads may not be maintained and can be dangerous during the winter.

The Nov. 29 landslide deposited an estimated 10 truckloads worth of rock and mud across U.S. 30 on Tuesday night. A commercial truck was also damaged by the slide, but the driver was uninjured.

“Crews removed about 650 cubic yards of debris from the road surface on Wednesday and Thursday – about one-quarter to one-third of the rock and soil from the Tuesday night landslide,” ODOT wrote in a Friday release.

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ODOT also detailed the remaining work needed before one lane can open:

  • Removal of the two large sections of hillside that are on the verge of sliding and large enough to block the entire highway.
  • Clearing enough debris on the road surface to allow reopening a single lane and provide space for crews to continue work and to catch any new smaller rock slides.
  • Repairing guard rail damage any pavement damage and setting up a single-lane detour with flaggers for alternating eastbound and westbound traffic flow.

ODOT says if you plan to travel between Portland and the Oregon Coast, U.S. 26 is the best option at this time.

TripCheck.com will continue to have up-to-date information.