Additional rockfall hazards identified west of Cody on US 14/16/20

January 14, 2019

RockfallHazard.jpgFollowing a Dec. 27 rockfall event three miles west of Cody on US 14/16/20, Wyoming Department of Transportation geologists identified additional hazards associated with potential rockfall during a Monday rock-climbing inspection of the area.

"We have remaining rock above the roadway that is still unstable," said WYDOT Principal Geologist David Vanderveen of Cheyenne. "We are bringing in contractors this week to assess the area and bid on the work. When a contractor is chosen to mitigate the rockfall hazard, we will ask them to conduct several days of rock scaling to remove the loose rocks."

Traffic delays are expected. "The scaling would occur in the same way that it did on the rockfall mitigation project, west of the tunnels," Vanderveen said.

WYDOT District Engineer Pete Hallsten said one of the potential rockfall contractors, GeoStabilization International of Grand Junction, Colo., is scheduled to be on site this week to assess the rockfall area.

"We could have some pretty severe traffic impacts, but we're not sure at this point," Hallsten said. "We don't know the duration of the work, or the exact timing of the work. It's worth noting that this is a different location than last year's rockfall mitigation project west of the tunnels. This rockfall work is not related to last year's project."

Hallsten said digital message signs have been deployed to deliver rockfall messaging to citizens on each end of the area, which is located at the east end of the tunnels on U.S. 14/16/20.

"Please watch for falling rocks and rocks lying on the highway as we move toward an emergency project to clear the area of potential rockfall above the highway just east of the tunnels," Hallsten said. "We appreciate everyone's patience with this situation."

For information about WYDOT's work, contact WYDOT public relations specialist Cody Beers at (307) 431-1803.