2009-04-06 Falling Rock Strikes Vehicle

Hwy #5, south of Clearwater
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

Rock fall from a rock bluff located adjacent to Hwy#5 came onto the Hwy as the vehicle was travelling by this location, striking the front bumper of the vehicle. Vehicle damage included a deep crease in the bumper and broken pins that hold the splash pan in place.

This incident occurred in the same area that snow and debris slides had blocked Hwy #5 in mid winter. Crews removed the snow and debris from the Hwy but did not remove this material from the ditch. With the ditch filled with snow and debris, any material falling from this bluff area is rolling right onto the hwy into the path of travelling vehicles. This photo was taken 4 days after the incident on the way back north on Hwy #5.


Learnings and Suggestions: 

1) Drivers that are travelling in the spring period should be aware of the hazard of falling material along sections of road that have adjacent steep slopes or rock bluffs, especially where the ditchline is filled with debris. While a cleared ditch does not guarantee that material falling on the side of the road will not reach the road surface, it should reduce this risk.

2) MOTH and Hwy’s Maintenance Contractors should consider removal of material in the ditchline along sections of road where there are adjacent steep slopes or rock bluffs. In absence of such maintenance, notice of the hazard should be posted on the roadside.


File attachments
2009-04-06 Falling Rock Strikes Vehicle.pdf
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