TxDOT -- First Blasting, now burning
March 21, 2013, 9:00 pm by Alexandria Randolph
The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) says huge piles of dead brush it heaped along RR 2147 two months ago isn’t creating a fire hazard and won’t be removed until rain and other conditions permit them to block part of the road and set it ablaze.
TxDOT public information officer Kelli Reyna said grinding or chipping the brush into mulch isn’t being considered because that would require added time and expense, but burning the brush "won’t pose an increased fire risk.”
While she gave assurances that workers "would take every necessary precaution” to control the burn in the drought-stricken countryside, those near the brush piles were skeptical after last Sunday’s bridge implosion overseen by TxDOT veered out-of-control and produced unanticipated damage.
Some feared the risk of losing control of the fires would be too great, others worried about the smoke they would produce so near their businesses, and officials said traffic might be snarled on the Horseshoe Bay-Cottonwood Shores-Marble Falls route.
"It absolutely concerns me,” said Salon Cappelli co-owner Pamela Wills, whose business is only about 100 feet from one of the brush heaps. "Last year in the drought, a car with a boat chain sparked fires and the field next to us caught. We were running scared. I don’t think it’s the best option to burn.”
For the full story, see Friday's Highlander.
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