, Corbin, KY


May 16, 2012

Crews continue to repair I-75 landslide

CORBIN — Southbound Interstate 75 will remain closed and one lane of northbound I-75 will remain open as crews continue work to repair the massive landslide that occurred near mile marker 143 in Campbell County, Tenn.

Traffic is currently being re-routed through Jellico, Tenn. at exit 160. Construction crews are stabilizing the interstate and building a buttress as well where the landslide occurred in early March. 

The goal is still to have one lane of traffic open for I-75 southbound travel and the second lane of traffic open for I-75 northbound travel by May 21, according to TDOT Representative Mark Nagi.

Crews are excavating and constructing a soil nail wall, which will require nails to be drilled as deep as 50 feet beneath the interstate. This is being done to stabilize the rock slope.

Currently, northbound I-75 has one lane of traffic open for about three miles from mile marker 141 to mile marker 144. Motorists should expect potential long delays and use extreme caution while traveling through this area. TDOT recommends the following alternate routes and detours — Detour route for I-75 South: Take Exit 160 in Jellico, Tenn., follow U.S. 25W to LaFollette and back onto I-75 South at Exit 134 in Caryville.

Wide load detour route for I-75 South: Take Exit 160 in Jellico, turn right and follow SR 297 West to SR 63 and back onto I-75 South at Exit 141. Detour route for I-40 destinations east of Dandridge, Tenn.: Take Exit 29 in Corbin, follow U.S. 25E to Morristown, Tenn., take I-81 South to its junction with I-40. However, U.S. 25E is reduced to one lane of traffic in each direction at the Kentucky-Tennessee border due to pavement repairs inside the Cumberland Gap Tunnel.

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet will use portable message boards and overhead signs to advise motorists of possible delays.

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The soft whistle of a flute floated through the room as audience members listened in awe to tales of the Thunderbolt people. “This land that you’re now sitting on was that of Thunderbolt people,” said Thunderbolt descendant David Owens. Owens and Indian flute player Robert Mullinax stopped at the Laurel County Library Friday night to entertain with spoken legends, folk lore and tales of the bygone Thunderbolts. Audiences were captivated by stories passed down from the Thunderbolt of how things came to be. Tales about fire, pipes and Kentucky — just to name a few — were shared by Ownes over the course of an hour with Mullinax playing behind him.

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