Flood water recedes, reveals extent of damage to 589

Flood water recedes, reveals extent of damage to 589
Photo credit: WDAM
Photo credit: WDAM
Photo credit: WDAM
Photo credit: WDAM
Photo credit: WDAM

LAMAR COUNTY, MS (WDAM) - More than 10 inches of rain fell in portions of Lamar County last week and destroyed a major highway in the process.

Those flood waters have receded and all that is left is broken asphalt and an empty roadbed along a stretch of Highway 589.

County officials are hopeful the Mississippi Department of Transportation will start construction soon.

"I've been told that they are filing for an emergency bid process and that probably next week they would be able to bid that project out and hopefully get started on that pretty soon, "Lamar County Road Manager Tommy Jones said.

The portion that is completely washed away stretches close to a hundred yards, however sections of the road along the edges washed away nearly a quarter mile away.

With the stretch blocked from WPA Road to Burnt Bridge Road, this hit to a major highway in the county connecting U.S. 98 to Purvis is causing residents to find alternate routes.

"It really did some damage, it's going to take a while to fix, my mom travels right down the road to Purvis to work every day and she has to take about 30 minutes out of her way versus 8 to 10 minutes to get to work," Lamar County resident Haley Cameron said.

"What we are looking at right now is the state is trying to divert all the traffic they can completely away from 589, they are encouraging folks on 98 to stay on 98 to 59 folks in Purvis to take 11 or 59," Jones said.

According to Jones, MDOT will put together a plan adding more drainage structure in the stretch of road that would hopefully prevent this in the future.

"For 589 if we stop and look at it has held water back over on county roads, and with everything being changed up, I think it's going to help a lot of flooding events in the future, it's going to prevent flooding and create better traffic flow all the way around," Jones said.

"This is the most damage I have ever seen done to the road, especially a main highway with it being 589, its really detoured the route for a lot of people that travel back and forth right here," Cameron said.

County officials are urging everyone to use caution when traveling on the detour routes.

"When you are traveling down one of the alternate roads like WPA Road, just go a little slower, some people may not be as familiar with that area as other people, so keep in mind when traveling with 589 being washed out," District 4 Supervisor Phillip Carlisle said.