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PennDOT Dealing With Record Number Of Area Landslides

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(Photo Credit: KDKA)

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

Sarah-Arbogast-Web Sarah Arbogast
Sarah Arbogast joined the KDKA team as a Traffic Reporter in November...
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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Mother Nature is creating some unexpected headaches for PennDOT.

Crews are gearing up to repair a record number of landslides in Allegheny, Beaver and Lawrence Counties.

Currently, crews are hard at work on Kittanning Street in Etna.

They are rebuilding a stretch of the road that is unstable because of a recent landslide.

The landslide ended up in James Gonzalez’s backyard.

“The hillside started to move slowly at first and then all of the sudden, the whole top part by the road fell and broke my gas line that was up there,” Gonzalez said.

This isn’t the only spot where work like this will soon be happening.

This construction season, PennDOT District 11, will deal with a record number of landslides.

A total of 19 will be addressed.

Two are in Lawrence County, five are in Beaver County and 12 are in Allegheny County.

“In about the last 25 years, we don’t have any record of having this number of landslides coming out of winter, typically you might have two major landslides and maybe six or seven minor ones. This was very significant in a bad way,” Dan Cessna said.

These landslides aren’t only impacting PennDOT’s work flow, but also the budget. A lot of money had to be shifted around, leaving some other projects on the back burner.

“We really had to divert about $19 million away from resurfacing through the district and that is a huge, huge change for resurfacing,” Cessna said.

While some roads will be neglected this year, PennDOT is hoping the slides stop.

“We had a large freeze-thaw coming out of winter and coupled with several months of pretty rainy weather and it really created a lot of major movements,” Cessna said.

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