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Yeager Airport overrun repairs could take years

Charleston Gazette-Mail photo by Chris Dorst Dale Mobley uses an excavator Wednesday to load material from a demolished house on Keystone Drive. Rodney Loftis, of Rodney Loftis & Son Contracting, said 11 of 18 structures affected by the March 12 safety-overrun slope failure at Charleston’s Yeager Airport have been torn down in the past week and a half.
Charleston Gazette-Mail photo by Chris Dorst
Dale Mobley uses an excavator Wednesday to load material from a demolished house on Keystone Drive. Rodney Loftis, of Rodney Loftis & Son Contracting, said 11 of 18 structures affected by the March 12 safety-overrun slope failure at Charleston’s Yeager Airport have been torn down in the past week and a half.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Yeager Airport’s governing board has managed to self-finance the removal of unstable earth from the March 12 safety-overrun slope failure, but restoring the safety zone to its former elevation at a safer gradient could take years to study, finance, design and build.

On Wednesday, the board voted to proceed with a second and final phase of debris removal from the massive landslide, which will involve nearly 100,000 cubic yards of dirt and rock and the installation of erosion and sediment controls. The contractor for that project, S&E Clearing and Hydroseeding, has agreed to give the airport two years to pay for that work, in exchange for an increase in the dollars-per-yard removal rate.

The first phase of debris removal is nearly complete, with more than 110 feet of unstable earth having been removed from the top of the collapsed debris field.

Before the second phase of earth removal can begin, attorneys representing parties who have filed lawsuits over the slope failure need to reach an agreement — expected to come within the next two weeks — on how forensic tests to determine the cause of the slide should be conducted…

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